We went to a village yesterday called Ermoclia, about 90 minutes outside the capital of Moldova. Two Winrock volunteers, Anna and Vika, led a seminar with about 25 high school girls there who are considered at-risk of human trafficking.
It’s interesting to see how this organization runs, because they train college-aged volunteers who live in the capital of Chisinau to lead these presentations ranging from anti-trafficking to business and entrepreneur opportunities. I think of it as putting a sign up well-ahead of the cliff area, rather than building a guardrail in front. These type of seminars warn girls about traffickers, since many try to trick victims into believing they are accepting legal work abroad in hotels or restaurants, only to find out later that they are unpaid sex-slaves. Additionally, it offers them healthy alternatives to this path, and encourages development domestically.
Anna and Vika did a wonderful job, and it’s inspiring to see what may be in store for Yearn to Learn in the future in the Russian Far-East. Winrock cultivates leadership among young, Moldovan volunteers who care about the issues, and we would like to eventually do the same in Russia in finding dedicated Russian volunteers.