146 top stars from the stages of the West End held a “flash mob” on the 11th of April in Trafalgar Square in support of the non-profit organisation Love146, which campaigns to end child sex slavery and exploitation.
The singers and dancers performed a routine to a specifically arranged track by Annie Lennox to highlight the shocking fact that child trafficking is a major problem in the UK.
The campaign is dubbed “Can You See Me” because the crisis is all too often hidden and taboo – when in fact, trafficking is going on in towns and cities throughout the UK, right in front of us.
Christian Elliot, Love146 “Can You See Me” Campaign Director says: “Many of UK citizens do not believe that child trafficking is a problem in their own neighbourhood and that it’s only a problem in less developed countries. This is simply not true. In the UK, there are boys and girls as young as 11 being trafficked into Britain from all over the world. They rapidly become victims of exploitation and are incredibly vulnerable. We must unite and play our part in making this abhorrent crime history.
For a country that promotes human rights around the world and has some excellent services for children and young adults, it is a scandal that in 2011 the UK has no designated aftercare or re-integration services for trafficked children.”
Love 146 are commissioning an independent report to highlight the need for safe accomodation, specialised aftercare and therapeutic services for trafficked children. The charity will shortly be releasing the findings of a survey of local authorities’ responses to trafficked children in their areas.
Rachel Tucker, star of West End hit wicked said: “All of us were shocked to hear the terrible fate of children even in our home towns and cities. This is our way of trying to raise awareness, and getting people behind Love 146’s campaign to make a real difference to some of the most damaged children in the country.”
Martin Houghton-Brown, Chief Exec of Missing People said: “The tragedy is that we neither know the true scale of the problem nor have a comprehensive plan to resource the solutions to children being trafficked into, out of and within the UK. Delivering effective, safe and secure care for children suspected of being trafficked is an essential step in providing a safety net for children who are at risk.”
Love146 is a charity whose principle concern is for the rehabilitation of children who have been liberated from sexual slavery. The Love146 model of aftercare assumes that extremely difficult situations affect the biological, psychological and social aspectsof that child or person. Therefore, a holistic intervention needs to deal with the potential damage of these three aspects. The success rate in the Philippines has proved to be very effective and Love146 are looking to implement culturally relevant options for the UK to bolt onto existing child protection services.
For more on this, go to: http://www.love146.org and check back here over the weekend for more information on the situation in the UK!
From UK mobiles text ‘LOVE’ to 70777 to donate £10 to Love146. Texts cost £10 plus your standard network rate. At least 100%/Vodafone, 99%/02, 88%/Three, 87%/Virgin and 87%/T-Mobile will go to the charity.