How We’re Helping Fight Child Slavery in West Africa
Slavery still exists.
Around the world, children are one of the primary victims of slavery—especially those working in agriculture in developing countries. Since 2014, IntelliTect has partnered with International Justice Mission (IJM) to fight child slavery in the fishing industry on Lake Volta, Ghana.
Lake Volta is considered to be the heart of the commercial fishing industry in West Africa. Many children in the region have lost parents to war, disease, AIDS and malnutrition. So, it’s no surprise that these children are easy targets for fishing boat owners who promise safe housing, good food and a long-term job. Over time, these children become trapped as slave labor for boat owners because they have no one to help them leave. IJM and the government of Ghana estimate that 50,000 children were working on Lake Volta as slaves in 2014.
Click here for stories of rescue.
IntelliTect is the largest donor to IJM’s anti-slavery work in Ghana. Using this funding, IJM fights slavery by documenting the boat owners most at fault and providing accountability to local police and judges for arresting them. As a result, this increased information and accountability have helped reduce bribery and corruption within the justice system. There’s a slow but steady decrease in child slavery in Lake Volta! Boat owners now know they can be punished for forcing children to work as slaves. As a result, hundreds of children have been rescued and freed since 2014. Thousands more were never taken in the first place.
Targeting and reducing child slavery is hard. With our partner, IJM, IntelliTect will continue our fight to eliminate child slavery in the same determined and innovative way we execute all of our projects. We are certainly honored to be a small part of the IJM Ghana team’s mission to end child slavery.