While many people would like to think that slavery was a tragedy of the past, the truth is that it still exists today, with up to 46 million people enslaved worldwide.  The Rotarian Action Group Against Slavery has a strategy for fighting this horrible problem, working at the local level:


In a village in northeastern India the action group is tackling the problem of debt bondage.  With the help of 13 clubs, a district grant from the Rotary Club of Binghamton, New York, and other sources, the action group provided $36,000 to the Schools4Freedom which works with local partners to battle debt bondage. 


Poverty, illiteracy, innumeracy, and natural disasters that destroy crops or homes can leave villagers vulnerable to debt bondage in rural villages.  When people don’t have enough to eat, or a roof over their head and their family is quite literally alive, they will often turn to whatever means are possible for survival.  Families may seek an arrangement with a business owner who asks them to sign a contract that they can’t read and therefore can’t understand, and they inadvertently trade their freedom for survival. 


Within a three-year period, The School4Freedom establishes a school inside the village that educates those enslaved of their basic rights and often gives them a trade.  It helps bring the once enslaved village to a position of strength resulting in their freedom.


Your contribution to The Rotary Foundation enables this to happen.  Thank you.