collaboration: different kinds of service, but the same Lord

18 Jan

Most organizations here at a part of a greater organization. One that helps everyone collaborate and work together to fight human trafficking and for human rights. Sex and labor traffickers, the bad guys, are so successful because they are so well networked internationally. They are working for the same goal: money, a lot of money. They carefully devise and carry out plans. They seem to always be a step ahead of everyone else. They are constantly changing how and where trafficking works. If organizations aren’t working together to fight trafficking, how the heck will they ever be successful? They wont. Seems like a hopeless situation. There are many important things that must happen, not just the rescuing aspect. And there are too many factors that play into why trafficking happens in the first place. There is where Chab Dai comes in with collaboration. Chab Dai brings organizations together to discuss gaps and successes, and the reasons why. The network and community of organizations here is amazing. Every organization we visited serves a different purpose: prevent, rescue, law/court, aftercare, reintegration or development. Every organization is great at what they do and they know it! Then they refer clients who may be a different stage in the recovery process to an organization who does that role best. The network here fits 1 Corinthians 12 and Romans 12 SO perfectly.

Romans 12:3-7 // For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with yourfaith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.

1 Corinthians 12 // …There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work….

This week I have done some once-in-a-lifetime things that most will never get to do. I’ve met amazing influential people of God who are so busy fighting injustices, yet made time for our group. The people I’ve met are way cooler than meeting Obama or the pope or Gandhi, well at least in my opinion. I was blessed the privilege to visit organizations that rarely ever let visitors come. I played, laughed, shared meals with children where it is literally a miracle that they are still alive and safe.

I’ve walked through evil streets, heard stories that make me want to throw up and lose faith in humanity. But I see also joy, restoration and hope. I see survivors, ranging all ages, genders and ethnicities, who are safe, thriving and on fire for the Lord.

There are so many good things going on here in Cambodia. So much hard work and collaboration. So many restored lives. Still so much evil. In the last 15 years these organizations have made a lot of progress, but in reality there is so much more that needs to be accomplished. Writing this I am tears because I am so blessed for these opportunities and I don’t know how to process what I’ve seen and heard. The fact that I can’t share my experiences with you which makes it so much harder. For confidentiality reasons in order to protect children and women I can not share information about what I’ve seen or heard.

But I can tell you to look into these organizations and support them! They make beautiful products handmade.

Agape International // “Agape International Missions (AIM) was founded on the ground in Cambodia in 1989 as a humanitarian aid and church planting organization in Cambodia. Since 2005, our ministries have focused on ending the evil of child sexual slavery. AIM is guided by a distinct philosophy that God anointed the Church through the power of Jesus to overcome evil. That belief combined with a holistic approach of Fighting Trafficking, Restoring Victims, and Transforming Communities, has made AIM extremely successful in creating long-term change.” http://agapewebsite.org/

Chab Dai // “Chab Dai Coalition, located in Phnom Penh, is a network of 50 Christian organizations in Cambodia working against trafficking and exploitation through prevention, aftercare, reintegration, and livelihood development.” http://chabdai.org/cambodia.html

Childsafe // “The ChildSafe Team is a young and flexible and most importantly – compassionate team of Cambodian, Thai, Laotian staff as well as of 1 or 2 expatriate assistants in each country. Our international support offices spread the ChildSafe message in their countries, all on a voluntary basis.” http://www.childsafe-international.org/cambodia/cscambodia.asp

Daughters (and Sons) of Cambodia //  “Daughters’ centre, in the heart of an area of Phnom Penh brothels, reaches out to girls (and boys) working as sex workers and offers them ways out of this situation and into a life of safety, freedom and dignity, where they can find wholeness and become all that God created them to be. Daughters has developed a unique model in Cambodia, one in which sex workers come directly to the organization from the brothels by their own choice. They come because they are already motivated to change their lives, and Daughters gives them the choices and dignity to build a different future, — one that is sustainable and respects their human rights.” http://daughtersofcambodia.org/

Friends // “There are an estimated 100 million street children worldwide. Friends-International believes that together we can build a world where no child or young person has to live or work on the streets.” http://www.friends-international.org/

Hagar // “Our purpose is singular; we restore broken lives. We welcome the toughest of human conditions. We stay focused on the individual. And we do whatever it takes for as long as it takes to restore life in all its fullness.” http://hagarinternational.org/international/

International Justice Mission // “IJM is a human rights agency that brings rescue to victims of slavery, sexual exploitation and other forms of violent oppression. IJM lawyers, investigators and aftercare professionals work with local officials to secure immediate victim rescue and aftercare, to prosecute perpetrators and to ensure that public justice systems – police, courts and laws – effectively protect the poor.” http://www.ijm.org/

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