An African trafficked woman died this week. Last night we went out on the streets to talk with the women we’ve been assisting and encountering. Everyone wanted to talk about the woman who died. A spirit of heaviness loomed when they whispered the words. It was as though saying it too loudly would bring the danger closer to them. No one knows exactly what happened. She was with the women just three nights before and looked fine – not sick at all, they said. Now it’s just guesses on the street. Was it poison? Witchcraft? Was she carrying drugs inside her stomach? Did one of the men harm her? The unknown is as frightening as the known because it leaves the door open to it happening again. The women are frightened by the news and unnerved, but only one said she is going home as soon as possible. She had a bad dream and she saw it as a warning from God that something bad is going to happen here. She has been telling the other women they need to leave as well. Most are stuck though. Most don’t have return tickets, many don’t have legit visas, and all have desperate situations at home. The smell of death is in the air but the women can only pray that it doesn’t find them. And pray they do.
We are helping 11 African women right now. The desperation to get out is increasing and when they find out there are options it gives them hope. Now I wonder if even more of the women will ask for help. I hope so. There have been too many tragedies. Enough is enough. Time is short and life is precious. It’s bad enough to see the women sacrifice themselves in prostitution to survive. No one should have to die this way.