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Rome Reports

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Victims of corruption and human trafficking tell their stories

Blessing Okoedion is a victim of corruption and she was in the Vatican to tell her story. She traveled from Nigeria to Spain where she had been promised a job in computer science. When she arrived, she realized that she was caught in the clutches of the slave trade. Despite this, she was courageous and denounced it.


Slave Trafficking Victim ;

"I believe it's normal to be afraid. Although the fear never stopped me to report them to the police, because I knew that they were criminals, they exploit the bad employment situation of our country to traffic many women."

Blessing has written the book "The Courage of Freedom," in which she tells her experience and wants to alert other women and girls of the danger they face when leaving their country to accept work abroad.


Slave Trafficking Victim ;

"In Italy and in other European countries they should know that we are human beings, they should not see us as products that they can buy and that they can consume and throw away when they don't need it."

Mafia and criminal gangs deal with human beings as if they were products. Sr. Gabriella Bottani, lives in close proximity to the suffering victims. She believes that even those who work to combat trafficking must strive harder.


Coordinator, Talitha Kum

"I realized that we had to work to change the mentality of each one of us working against trafficking. It was at the time when I started working with a religious network against trafficking. It was a starting point to start working together in a network that is very close to the religious life and that seeks to collaborate with everyone to promote human dignity and join forces to achieve the common good."

Corruption finds its place in all countries. One of the most affected is Mexico, the third most dangerous in the world. There, organized crime and drug trafficking are daily occurrences.


Culture of Legality Program (Mexico State)

"Corruption creates situations of insecurity, people are not able to go out. One example is in Cuauhtemoc city, a colony in the State of Mexico. On Sunday's people naturally go out, but at two in the afternoon nobody leaves their houses, because the insecurity is so high due to corruption. There is no police presence and the public ministry does not intervene. Neither is there a place where reports can be made, and people's thoughts are: 'If I go out, they will murder me.'"

Perhaps all these stories are not enough to stop a monster as big as corruption, but in the Vatican they are aware that the problem is serious and that to stand up, they must all work together.