Moldova (OM/MNN) — What does Moldova have to do with Mount Everest? At first glance, the two don't have that much in common.
But the Operation Mobilization Freedom Climb and a hiker named Becky Johnson are tying the two together.
The Freedom Climb raises awareness and funding for projects that fight human trafficking–projects like Beginning of Life (BoL) which rescues and restores trafficked women in Moldova.
Moldova is Europe's poorest country, and over 100,000 people there fall prey to trafficking. National issues like poverty and unemployment drive many young people abroad to find work, where they become vulnerable.
According to BoL, authorities aren't a source of help. Widespread corruption results in many officials becoming involved in human trafficking as recruiters and agents.
Young people and women aren't the only ones to suffer from Moldova's social diseases. Over the last decade, more than 50% of the labor force has left the country, leaving 30% of the nation's kids as "social orphans."
This is where Johnson comes in. She coordinates OM Moldova's Day Care Center, a project focusing on children from the most difficult backgrounds. By helping these kids get an education and develop a healthy self-image, the center enables them to make better decisions in the future.
To see more of what God is doing in Moldova through OM, click here.
The Day Care Center is one recipient of funds raised through OM's Freedom Climb and is part of what drove Johnson's decision to participate. She's been actively working with OM Moldova for the past two years and wants to speak up for those who have no voice.
See the latest Freedom Climb updates by visiting their Facebook page. Pray for strength and perseverance for women who are completing this challenge.