Missing Anti-Trafficking Program

MISSING is a public awareness campaign that aims to sensitize people to the plight of millions of girls who are trafficked for sexual exploitation. Trafficking has always been a grievous issue, and with rising globalization, the risks only increase. Child trafficking has been a huge problem for India, with many girl children being forced to act as prostitutes and perform unimaginable horrific tasks. This is also represented in the symbols of MISSING. The “larger-than-life black silhouettes of young girls against urban backdrops, which look like sharp, black cutouts of the sky – holes into which millions of girls disappear from the face of the earth into the dark world of prostitution.” [1]

In this program, there were five modules. In the first module, we needed to play a game from the perspective of a trafficked girl. This was particularly hard for me because I usually try to avoid bringing in reality in leisure activities, but this experience strengthened me and made me aware of the harsh reality of trafficked children. In the second module, which I was in charge of, we needed to spread awareness about trafficking. This had to be done via an online collective on Instagram and an awareness session (which we did with Grade 6 students). The third and fourth modules were about adolescent education and cyber safety respectively. We had to create online collectives and have awareness sessions for these modules as well. Lastly, in the fifth module, we had to create a snakes and ladders game based on trafficking. The snakes represented decisions that lead to trafficking, and the ladders represented decisions that lead to safety.

Overall, through this experience, I was able to gain a lot of knowledge about trafficking and safety. I am also proud to say that as a group, we were able to send a message to a lot of people, which has hopefully helped them in their life. This lasted for approximately 6 months, from October 2020 to March 2021.

Having an Awareness Session with Grade 6 Students

Link to Recording
Link to Presentation
Allocation of Roles
Link to Main Sheet
Link to Module 3 Video ContentLink to Module 3 Poster ContentSession by MISSING Team
Effective Communication between the Team

LO 1: Identify their own strengths and develop areas for personal growth.

My strengths during this experience were that I was organized and meticulous. I was responsible for leading Module 2, which I personally believed to be pivotal because it gave direction to the rest of the modules in terms of social media. I, along with one of my group members, was good at researching, which is why we were responsible for creating content for the videos and posters for the different modules. I had to use my research skills to first understand a particular topic and then transfer it into the content and the awareness presentations.

An area for personal growth in this experience was definitely time management. Creating content is tedious work, and it was particularly hard for me to balance that with other assignments. At times I also felt frustrated with my group members since they had created a strict schedule for the content submission. However, I did manage to work around this and attempted my best to make the submissions on time with good quality.

LO 2: Demonstrate that they have undertaken challenges, developing new skills in the process.

One of the biggest challenges we took on was creating a Youtube channel and having awareness sessions. On the Youtube channel and social media, we were really struggling to get new followers. We had tried everything from marketing in WhatsApp groups to begging family members to subscribe to the accounts. Ultimately, we tried to get new followers through the school platform, by advertising it to different grades, however, this is still a work in progress. I can safely say, though, that we have learned some serious marketing skills and also skills in video and poster designing, which will definitely be helpful in future endeavors.

While my presentation skills are one of my proudest strengths, it was difficult to explain complex topics such as trafficking, sexuality, etc to a younger target audience. It was definitely a complex balance between scaring the children with stories of trafficking and preparing them for it. Even now, to be honest, I don’t really know if those children are actually feeling safe with all of this knowledge. This helped me further develop my presentation skills in terms of diplomacy and I have, hopefully, learned to deliver controversial and complex topics in a tactful manner.

LO 3: Demonstrate how to initiate and plan a CAS experience.

Although the basic plan for this CAS experience was given by the MATP organization, the way we completed the modules was planned by my group and me. For example, in Module 2, we were simply told to create an awareness campaign, however, my team planned social media, awareness sessions, etc. We also had to do communications with the school process organizers, team leaders of different grades, senior school coordinators, etc. This allowed me to apply previously learned knowledge and improve the planning of this CAS experience.

LO 4: Show commitment and perseverance in their CAS experience.

I demonstrated commitment and perseverance in this project because I dedicated a lot of time and effort to this project, which took about 6 months. We have frequent internal meetings, a minimum of one common meeting scheduled every week on Mondays, to discuss our plan of action and completed tasks. I attempted to complete all of my tasks prior to the deadline so that any edits or revisions could be done as required. 

LO5: Demonstrate the skills and recognize the benefits of working collaboratively.

We showcased brilliant collaboration skills in this project, in my opinion. Since there were five of us and five modules in total, we made each person responsible for a particular module. I was responsible for Module 2, which was the awareness campaign about trafficking. In addition to this, roles like video editor, content creator, social media manager, etc, were also assigned to each individual. I was the content creator for multiple modules. This project would not be possible without the collaboration of my team, the collaboration of the MISSING team, and the collaboration of school authorities.

At the same time, having to collaborate and follow what others were saying was a little difficult for me. For example, during the content creation of Module 3, I could not pertain to the deadlines because of increasing summative assessments, preparation for the term exams, stress due to COVID 19, and some health issues. But, my teammates had to insist that I stick to the deadlines. While I do understand their point of view and expectations, somewhere down the line, it also made me resent them. However, I was able to move past that because of support from my team once I communicated with them. Overall, this experience has allowed me to understand both the benefits and limitations of working collaboratively and has taught me how to work in a team.

LO6: Demonstrate engagement with issues of global significance.

The primary purpose of this experience is to raise awareness about the horrific issue of human trafficking, which has huge global significance. Human trafficking is a violation of essential human rights, and also takes away the freedom of people all around the globe. It has affected millions of families, taken away their faith and safety, and has turned innocent children into prostitutes, drug mules, slaves, and even corpses because they were either killed, died of exhaustion and injuries, or used for organ donations. When this project was introduced in school, I was very keen to volunteer and spread awareness about this. The most important thing is that I learned about trafficking and I finally understand this grievous issue, which to be honest, I did not before. This understanding has made me grow mentally and emotionally and has created this urge to help the world.  

LO7: Recognise and consider the ethics of choices and actions.

The issue itself brings in the concept of ethics and morals. In my opinion, it is absolutely unethical to avoid the dark reality of the world, and it is unethical to do nothing about it. This is the reason why I was determined to make a difference in our society. Even if one child is protected from this horrific thing, I believe myself to be successful in this endeavor. Ethics of choices also came into play in content creation and awareness sessions. I was rather explicit and provided deep information in the content for social media, which was about trafficking and sexuality in my modules. It is my belief that people who are on social media are highly likely to be aware of these things and thus they should get the full information. However, during the live sessions, we took care to use euphemisms like “bad touch” in place of sexual assault in order to not scare the children. However, we did talk about prostitution and what happens to trafficked children, girls especially, in order to protect them and prepare them to the best of our abilities.

Learner Profiles

I have demonstrated several learner profiles:

  • Thinker – I used my critical thinking skills for problem-solving and last-minute changes, such as the type of sessions we took, planning the modules, etc. I used my creative thinking skills while marketing our accounts, creating the video and poster content, and presentations for the awareness sessions.
  • Reflective – I assessed and evaluated my strengths and weaknesses regularly during the course to try to improve my self-management skills and thinking skills. I also had to judge the effectiveness of my content after being posted, and sessions after they were completed.
  • Communicator –  I effectively communicated with different stakeholders like students, other members of my group, teachers, supervisors, coordinators, etc, through different forms of communication. I also communicated with people online via my content, and I can only hope that it was effective.
  • Inquirer – Post sessions taken by the MISSING team, I was left with hundreds of questions. Why? How? What? When? Where? Why? These questions popped into my mind based on trafficking, discrimination, inequality, toxic masculinity, etc, and I became a keen inquirer by looking into these questions and critically thinking about them.

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