Each year Human Trafficking generates the largest volume of revenue in the world, second only to the drug trade. It is a more profitable industry than the buying and selling of illegal arms and it is estimated that more than 2.5 million people are trafficked over state lines and between coutnries around the world each year. It is a scary and horrifying pandemic that is not receiving the attention it should. But in all of this darkness, there is light-pillars of hope and organzations who are banding together to stop the buying and selling of people and give those that have fallen victim hope and a chance at a new life. One of these organizations is called NightLight International. It is a not-for-profit run by an increidlbe American woman who felt called to move her family to Thailand and dedicate her life to not only rescuing people from the sex trade but giving them an alternative way of life. Here is the mission statement from their website:
NightLight’s mission is to do “whatever it takes” to effect change within the global sex industry. Our local offices build relationships with victims of commercial sexual exploitation and those who are at-risk and provide hope, intervention, rescue, and assistance by offering alternative vocational opportunities, life-skills training, and physical, emotional, and spiritual development to those seeking freedom. NightLight builds support networks internationally to intervene and assist women, men, and children whose lives are negatively impacted by the sex industry.
One of the skills that the women learn when they become involved with NightLight is jewelry making. And it is through the selling of this beautiful jewelry that they are able to sustain this program that has helped so many. Having spent several months traveling through Thailand and seeing the hideous monster that is the sex trade firsthand, it is a cause very near and dear to my heart and one that I love to support. Below are some photos of a few of my favorite pieces of jewelry that I have picked up from NightLight. But there are many, many more gorgeous necklaces, earrings, and bracelets on their website-so plesae make sure to visit and spend some time browsing. The quality is incredible, the beads and stones used are top notch, and in purchasing this jewelry you are making it possible for someone to create and sustain a life outside of slavery.
Another great way to shop is fair trade. And there is an incredible website called Ten Thousand Villages that is chalk full of jewelry, home decor, gifts, etc. from all around the globe. Here are a few of my favorite things I have recently picked up from them…
*The bracelet and gold earrings are from Ten Thousand Villages and the shell earrings are from NightLight*
You can see me wearing this necklace here.
Memorial Day weekend is always a big shopping weekend. There are so many good sales and bargains which are seemingly impossible to pass up. But maybe this year, we should all think twice about where we are spending and consider supporting one of these incredible organizations. It might be a small gesture, but we really can make a difference.
Happy Holiday Weekend!