I am working towards completing my undergraduate degree in Integrative Studies with a concentration in Social Justice and Human Rights / minor in Immigration Studies. I have just a few more credits to complete my degree and have been afforded the awesome opportunity to work with victims/survivors of trafficking in the Philippines. Would you consider supporting my participation in this service-learning study abroad towards the completion of my degree?
A Bit Of Background:
This semester I am enrolled in Human Trafficking and the International Community, a course that focuses on the complexities of human trafficking and smuggling. Throughout my time in the course I have learned so much about human trafficking, how it happens, where it happens, and to whom it happens. If you think trafficking only happens in dark alleyways in impoverished countries, think again. It happens in your affluent neighborhood, on your street, and in broad daylight. It is closer and more prevalent than you think. As technology evolves, the methods traffickers use to attract and trap their victims evolves as well.
There are populations that are more vulnerable to certain kinds of trafficking. For sex trafficking, its women and children. For labor exploitation, its men and children. For drug trafficking, its men and children. Common factors that make populations more vulnerable to human trafficking are economic turmoil, high rates of unemployment, war and political instability, as well as gender violence, discrimination, and inequity.
The continent where human trafficking occurs at unparallel rates is Asia with much of it being concentrated in Thailand. Yet with recent advances in technology, trafficking has become transnational and organized crime groups trade people across countries with ease using falsified paperwork and government connections.
What I Will Be Doing:
In the Philippines, the organization Tambayan cares for youth who are survivors of/at risk of being trafficked, sometimes even by their own families. Tambayan provides education, recreation, rehabilitation and career readiness programs for these youth. I had the privilege of skyping with the children of Tambayan to hear their stories and aspirations a few weeks ago.
My professor Dr. Al Fuertes has worked closely with Tambayan Center for more than 10 years and has conducted several student service-learning programs through GMU with Tambayan as well. I applied and have been accepted into the Human Trafficking and Community Engagement study abroad program from June 24 - July 22, 2019. The program is the equivalent of two classes (6 credits) towards my degree in Integrative Studies: Social Justice and Human Rights with a minor in Immigration Studies . It will be a lot of work but I have accepted this challenge.
For a month, in the cities Davao, Manila, Tagbilaran, and Dumaguete, I will be working with several organizations (including Tambayan) under the supervision of Dr. Fuertes. As a part of the service-learning, I will be working with Silliman University and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to organize and facilitate educational programs for at-risk youth. Moreover, I will be further studying some of the factors that result in the exploitation of these youth.
Now that I have been accepted into the program, there are a few costs that I need to manage, specifically the program fee of $1,679 and the airefare of approx $2,000 There are other costs but I am asking for a bit of help from my community with the program fee and airfare.
While I am in the Philippines, I will be documenting in detail my service-learning via a blog that I will create soon. Please consider supporting me and my participation in this program.
Read more about the program here:
To view the program budget sheet:
For more information about Tambayan:
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