Kwame from Ghana
Like many stories of trafficking and slavery, Kwame's begins with a dream. His parents were told he would join a successful sales business. And like each of these stories, the promises quickly turned to lies.
"The man mentioned that I was going to be involved in his selling business and I was a bit interested," says Kwame. His parents believed it too, never guessing he would be trafficked to Yeji, the infamous fishing region around Ghana's Lake Volta. Countless children work in the fishing industry, doing the dirty and dangerous jobs nobody else wants to do - jobs they are forced to do.
Kwame toiled under the deceptive fisherman for 8 long years. When asked to describe this work, he replied: "We wake up around 4 am to the river to pull net into the boat and bring the fish to the river side by 8am. After delivering the fish we then return back onto the river to work and it's after all this before we are given food." The rest of the day was spent mending nets in preparation for even more fishing in the afternoon.
Kwame was released after eight years of backbreaking labor and heartbreaking abuse. He was released by Free the Slaves ally in Ghana, APPLE. Kwame is now recovering with APPLE where he says he is "very happy", adding "I am very much interested in school and given the opportunity, I will pay attention in class so that I can grow to become somebody."
Encourage Businesses and Employers!
Forced labor will continue so long as there is a market for selling the products of slave labor. Help suppress the demand for these products, be a responsible consumer of goods and services! Inform yourself about the labour policies of companies to ensure their products are free from slave labour and other forms of exploitation.
Source: Free the Slaves