Human Trafficking: Protecting Children’s Right to Safety in Armenia

Editors’ note: Children are vulnerable to exploitation and abuse in all societies, and more so in communities facing poverty and social instability. Journalist Gohar Abrahamyan reports on how a congregation of women religious in Armenia is working to protect children from underprivileged families from trafficking and exploitation. She provides her personal impressions on the work of these sisters in this audio report. Listen to the audio clip, then read more about their work in “Targeted Twice” in the September 2023 issue of ONE. A full transcript follows.

The Armenian Sisters of the Immaculate Conception, an organization operating in Armenia since 1992, play a vital role in protecting children from vulnerable families. They provide care and protection to these children, ensuring their rights are upheld and preventing them from falling prey to trafficking or exploitation.

The sisters offer shelter, food, education, love and support, guiding these children away from harmful habits and providing them with a chance at a better life. It is remarkable how these few women can carry out such a challenging mission in such a systemic and impactful manner.

I witnessed how the sisters nurture and educate these children, protecting them from harmful influences. They are making a real difference, breaking the cycle of poverty and giving these children a chance at a better future. Information is power, and this principle seems to guide the Catholic sisters in their dedication [and] efforts to make a positive difference in the lives of hundreds of families.

Their compassion, care and service leave an invaluable mark on the communities they support. I carry with me the stories of these families and the incredible work of the Armenian Sisters of the Immaculate Conception. I hope their impact will inspire many more to lend a helping hand and make a difference in the lives of those who really need it most.

A communications specialist, Gohar Abrahamyan covers issues of justice and peace in the Caucasus for local and international media.

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