“We realize that we are all living with victims or people vulnerable to trafficking and the question was: How best can each one play her/his role to save our brothers and sisters through words and deeds?” Sr. Angela Kapitingana
In October 2019 the Union of Major Superiors of Burkina/ Niger (USMB/N) invited the Talitha Kum/Burkina team to share with them on human trafficking and on the Talitha Kum network.
Talitha Kum is an international network created in 2009 to coordinate the anti-trafficking efforts of Religious sisters in the five continents. It is a project of the international Union of Superiors General (UISG) that supports the local initiatives of different congregations with coordination and training at an international level.
Sisters Yvonne-Clémence Bambara (ND de la Charité du Bon Pasteur) and Angela Kapitingana (MSOLA) made a presentation that made a strong an impact and the USMB/N decided to integrate Talitha Kum to the Justice and Peace commission. For MSOLA it was the best way to celebrate our 150th anniversary, by uniting our effort with others in the fight to modern slavery.
In November we held a three day workshop in Bobo Dioulasso on human trafficking, and the participants came from 26 different Congregations of the region: Burkina, Niger, Togo, Benin, Mali and Ivory Coast. There were also three lay people from Niger and Burkina-Faso. We were struck by the lack of knowledge about human trafficking, even when it exists around us, and the fear to denounce it. The question arose: We do know that human trafficking exists, but why we do not see it? In the sharing that followed, the group became aware that discovering the presence of HT around us will push us to change, but we do not want this because it is very demanding. During these three days, we realized that positive thinking is essential in fighting HT, as this changes our attitude and leads us to live in hope when dealing with it.
“Never forget that God is a dreamer” and the best we can do is to share in His dream of dignifying every human being created in His own image. This phrase enriched the response to the workshop and made us daring enough to form a national network that will collaborate with the neighbouring countries. To fight this evil we need to be interconnected and ONE. Today networking is a must. We realize that to network we have to change our mentality and that networking will strengthen us and enrich our different charisms, whose diversity is a riches we can share as religious participating in God’s dream for Humanity in the fight against human trafficking.
We ended our workshop with a simple and beautiful Eucharist where the national coordinating team of Talitha Kum/Burkina was blessed. Five Congregations form the team: Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Africa, Sisters of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd, Little Sisters of the Assumption, Missionaries of Africa and Brothers of the Christian Schools. Our program aims at increasing awareness among the youth through creative means. Others are willing to join the fight against human trafficking in the Burkina-Faso/Niger network.