In May 2018, IJM Ghana and police rescued these children from labour trafficking in the fishing industry on Lake Volta. Initial assessments revealed they had experienced significant trauma which posed a threat to their healing and restoration process.
Over an eight-month period, a clinical psychologist guided them through trauma-informed counselling sessions and activities to help them find a positive approach to overcoming trauma-induced behaviours and emotions.
All eight children demonstrated high levels of resilience and were able to share their stories with strength; something that was difficult for them early on in their recovery.
The children learned about their right to be safe and protected from crimes like child labour and trafficking, and learned techniques for relaxing and coping with negative thoughts. Previously, the children reported that talking about the pain of their past would make them angry with themselves, but they are now learning to share their stories without self-reproach.
One child shared,
Aftercare staff have observed their increased assertiveness and positive behaviour – testament to their growing ability to overcome the trauma of their past.
You can help provide ongoing trauma-informed aftercare services for child survivors of slavery by becoming an IJM Freedom Partner today.
International Justice Mission is a global organisation that protects the poor from violence throughout the developing world. IJM partners with local authorities to rescue victims of violence, bring criminals to justice, restore survivors, and strengthen justice systems.Find out more
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