Zirahuen, Mexico. This small, sleepy town of about 2,500 was my home for a month as my husband and I backpacked through Central America. As we wandered the adobe brick streets one afternoon in search for a restaurant, we discovered an open kitchen with tables out front. A delightful woman (pictured here) made us a delicious home-cooked meal of burritos. Her young daughter came and served us. She was 15, at most. And pregnant. Her mother told us she was going to be a grandmother. The girl avoided our gaze.
We ate there a few times, and often saw the girl looking out the window at girls her age playing on the streets. She did not go to school. Her eyes were sad even when she smiled. And despite her missed opportunities, this one at least had a mother with a small business. Many girls find themselves neck-deep in poverty, with no one to turn to. Missed opportunities for these girls are more than just an inconvenience, they are a recipe for exploitation.
I tell this story as part of the The Girl Effect Blogging Campaign, which I discovered through my friend Roxanne Krystalli’s blog. The Girl Effect is a movement that is spreading like wildfire, through clips like this:
My husband and I support young women through Kiva micro credit loans in our attempt to empower those who want to rise above poverty. Giving girls and women opportunities is a key component of reducing systemic vulnerability. The Girl Effect seeks to equip us who have opportunity to empower those who would like to dream. Like Anita from India.
To learn more check out The Girl Effect website. It is through movements like this that we can address the supply side of sex trafficking and spread some hope!