A Christian humanitarian organization is hoping to start a baking school in Thailand as one way to help women avoid being forced into the sex industry.
By presidential proclamation, January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month in the U.S. "Through force, fraud, and coercion, traffickers push their victims into demeaning forms of abuse, including domestic servitude and commercial sexual exploitation," says President Donald Trump's December 31 proclamation. "It is a scourge on the global community."
Indeed, that scourge is not limited to America. OneNewsNow spoke with Noel Yeatts, president of World Help, which is dealing with that issue in countries like India and Thailand. According to Yeatts, thousands of girls go to work every night in the red light districts in the beach resort city of Pattaya, Thailand. She explains the girls are often drawn to the big cities by the promise of economic opportunity – but soon find themselves working in bars.
"And they will start there working as a waitress or as a cashier," she continues, "and one thing leads to another and before they know it they're trapped doing work they never thought they would spend their life doing."
World Help reports that more than 45,000 girls and young women work in the sex industry in Pattaya and the capital city of Bangkok alone.
Yeatts explains that her organization helps rescue girls off the streets by providing "Freedom Homes" for them to live. But World Help takes it a step further by teaching them a skill. For example, they want to build a baking school. "... It's becoming a very sought-after trade; it's very trendy right now," she adds.
According to Yeatts, baking isn't common in Thailand as people typically grow up without ovens in their homes – so they never learn how to bake.
"So if these girls can learn how to bake, then they can now get a job in cafés and restaurants and ... really have an opportunity to provide for themselves with dignity," she states.
World Help is in the process of raising $125,000 to make the baking school a reality.