KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Kansas City woman is on a mission to help the millions of young girls and women who are victims of sex trafficking.
Bereket Mamo was inspired to start her organization Springs of Living Water to help victims in her home country of Ethiopia.
“It’s not easy at all, but it is something if you’re passionate that you can do,” she said.
Mamo, who has lived in the United States since she was young, said her work is a life’s mission and a calling from God.
“I’ve always wanted to help those who are marginalized, broken and hurt,” she said.
Right now, volunteers are on the ground in Ethiopia. Every night, Mamo said the volunteers hit the streets of the capital of Addis Abba looking for victims who are trapped.
Already she said, they’ve saved several people.
“They know our names. They’re very comfortable with us, and then we invite them to share their stories with us,” Mamo said.
She wants to push the mission forward. She wants to eventually build a center for the women, where they can not only be safe but also be made whole again.
“We want to link them with vocational skills and training programs to where these trainings exist to teach these girls skills, so they can have a job,” she said.
Mamo is also looking forward to developing partnerships here in the U.S. and across the world to help put centers in other of the globe.
“Start with one, stop for one person, stop for one girl who’s hurting,” she said.
The work, while fulfilling, is also dangerous. She said every rescue, and every trip back home to save those in need, puts her life at risk.
But Mamo said it’s worth it to save the lives of the women who she believes will be key to help the country grow economically.
“It’s essential people in Ethiopia that could make a difference and that would help the country to keep growing, but they’re also forgotten and forsaken,” she said.
Mamo said she also wants to use her voice to educate children before they too fall through the cracks.
And asks people to help in two ways: Prayers or donation. Both, she said, are powerful.
A fundraiser for the organization will be held at Brick House KC at 6 p.m. Aug. 30. You can find more information on her website.