I’m using the Moon Day News this week to make sure you all know about the best thing we do all year.
On Saturday the 2nd of March at 10am we will be participating in this year’s Yoga Stops Traffick event.
Yoga Stops Traffick is an annual, global event which raises funds for Odanadi Seva Trust, a home for children in Mysore who are the victims of human trafficking.
Odanadi is a very special place which is very close to our hearts. 25 years ago, while researching a story about prostitution, two former journalists, Stanly and Parashu (who still run Odanadi), came to the realisation that they couldn’t stand by any longer and allow this horrific situation to continue. They set up a boys’ and a girls’ home for children who had been victims of human trafficking.
Since then they have been literally kicking doors down and rescuing children from unspeakably monstrous people and situations. They house, feed, educate and rehabilitate these children and endeavour to provide them with a level of normality which they didn’t have before.
Many of the children in Odanadi had, while under control of the traffickers, been forcibly addicted to drugs in order to pacify them. As you would also expect, there is a high level of residual trauma and mental health problems which they experience. Stanly, Parashu and the people at Odanadi provide a safe space in which these beautiful children can find some peace and build a new life.
Much of the budget of Odanadi is taken up by fighting court cases against the traffickers who sue them for seizing their ‘property’. Because they are dealing with a notoriously corrupt system, the police often take the side of the traffickers and expensive legal action follows.
The children of Odanadi are sent to school where possible. Many of them even continue on to University, all funded by Odanadi. The children become able to live a normal and productive life as functioning members of Indian society, despite their horrific history.
Those children who are so severely psychologically damaged that they are unable to attend school, are taken care of through the Odanadi system and made to feel safe and like valued members of the community there. It is really a special place.
As I said above, it is a place that is very close to our hearts. Suzanne taught yoga to the girls the last two times we were in Mysore and I visited myself a number of times. Despite the trauma that the residents have gone through, as soon as you walk through the gates of Odanadi, you get an unmistakable sense that this is a happy place, full of happy children.
Help Odanadi continue to support the happiness of their children and to rescue more and more girls and boys from the horrors of human trafficking.
Please come along on Saturday the 2nd of March and support the amazing work that they are doing.