“If we can help set up small businesses in these villages,” said SIFE project manager Alisha Loyd, “then the families will have alternative income and won’t feel the need to sell their children into hard labor.”
As part of the SIFE project, Monroe Information Technology Professor Jacob Bohaeng, a Ghanaian native, will be working with his relatives who live in Ghana to teach villagers to weave and use the looms that the SIFE team has already donated.The SIFE students will then help sell the goods as well as guide the villagers to market them on their own.
SIFE is coordinating the Someplace Special for Kids project with the International Organization For Migration and IOM staff Eric Peasah, who travels to the Volta Lake region in Ghana and rescues children who have been trafficked to fisherman and used as laborers under oppressive conditions.Children as young as four years-old have been rescued.
At the SIFE event, Mr. Peasah made a heart-wrenching presentation, including a video illustrating theplight of the children and his efforts to free them.
“We can’t stand by and let this happen,” Ms. Loyd said.“Since our SIFE mission dictates that we use our education for the greater good, we’re hopeful that we can bring a sense of economic independence to the Ghanaian families, which is a best way to put a stop to these horrors and give these children a chance to have better lives.”
To assist the SIFE team in fighting child trafficking by helping to sell goods or provide other outreach, contact Prof. Stacy Crawford at firstname.lastname@example.org, or (914)740-6439 or Tevia D. Clarke at email@example.com, (914) 740-6443.