We are THRILLED by the number of kids who are participating in She’s Worth It! A few of you have asked for some tips on how to broach the subject with your kids. What to say. What not to say. How to frame the issue and clearly explain it without it getting to dark. So here you go! I’m no expert, but I have talked to tons of kids about slavery and I love watching the part of their hearts that cries out for justice and hope in this world come alive.
Explaining the issue
1. Keep it simple. Wikepedia describes slavery as “a system under which people are treated as property to be bought and sold, and are forced to work.” I stick with this for my kids “slavery is when one person thinks they own another person and can be their boss at all times. They don’t treat them well or respect their words”
2. No need to describe sex trafficking unless you are working with teenagers! Even though She’s Worth It is focusing on victims of sexual slavery, you can simply talk to your kids about slavery. The girls are captured/sold against their will to “bad guys” who believe they own them and they are not treated kindly.
3. Use it as an opportunity to talk about the “chains of injustice” and how it must feel. Don’t forget to talk about the chains around the “bad guys” (I don’t use the words pimp or brothel – though I’m sure my kids have overheard them) too. How sad and difficult must it be to think that money
is more important than people? How sad to think you have to control other people and you don’t really see these precious girls?
4. Talk about the extent of the issue. Tell them this happens all over the world, to all colors and types of people. A lot of kids have heard about slavery only in terms of Africans being enslaved by whites. It’s important to let them know that this happens in every country. It helps them to put a face on the issue.
My biggest plea for you here is to please, please, please don’t stop here! If we only talk to our kids about the darkness, they could
become fearful and discouraged. Please don’t stop at describing slavery as this bad thing that happens in our big, bad world. Too often, this is how we talk about issues. Personally, I believe this lends itself to creating a culture of apathy. If I can’t do anything about it, why care? Kids dream big. Always. My 8 year old still prays at night that he might get the powers of super man :) Children are not limited by the view of the world that we have after years of pain and wounding! Enjoy this. Revel in it. LEARN from it!
Talking about the solution:
1. Invite your kids to pray for slaves. Use our field partners page and start praying for the organizations we are partnering with! My Gracie prays every night that “Mr James (Indian Rescue Mission) will rescue more slaves” It’s personal. She knows someone in the fight.
2. Describe the steps to addressing the issue (the depth will vary according to their ages). You can explain prevention, rescue, restoration and reintegration fairly easily to most kiddos.
3. Tell them that THEY get to be a part of bringing light into this darkness! We would love for your kiddos to be a part of our campaign. We have postcards that they can take to neighbors, friends, teachers or family members! They explain the issue while clearly defining a goal to ask 10 friends to give $10. Since the average price of a slave is $90 in the world, kids LOVE the idea of raising $100! The postcards also include a QR code so that kids can accept gifts on the spot.
4. Let them make “truth cards” for girls who are trapped in slavery or recently rescued! This is a way to let them use their hands to really make a physic
al difference. Go here http://bravegirlsclub.com/how-to-make-a-truth-card) to learn more from our friends at the Brave Girls Club on how to make a truth card! (I will be taking Truth Cards w
ith me to give away in Cambodia, Thailand, India and Amsterdam with the organizations we are partnering with on my trip in April!)
5. Brainstorm! This is where you let your kids’ creative juices flow. Maybe they have an idea that you wouldn’t have thought of? They may want to do extra chores to raise money, make things to send, pray more specifically or do a little presentation in their class to explain slavery to their friends! We believe that each person is invited into a grand adventure that is being all they are called to be and to creatively use their gifts to bless the world. Let your child dream.
We all love our kiddos and want to protect them from the evils in this world. We want them to believe the world is as big and beautiful and good as they believe it is. This often makes us fearful of talking to our kids about issues such as this, especially
ones that are this dark. I’d encourage you to read the story we posted yesterday about how we explained darkness and light to kids in a first time discussion on slavery. Click HERE to read it. I promise, it will bless and inspire you. If you present the opportunity to be LIGHT at the same time that you present the darkness, you will find that your kids will leave just wanting to wield their weapon of LIGHT in this world. All of the stories I’ve heard this week of families talking to their kids about slavery ended with kids BEGGING to go out that day to start telling others and to raise some money to help rescue and heal these precious girls.
Let us know how your conversation about slavery goes! Any tips you can add in the comments section or stories about your precious kiddos would be great for others! Guess what? You get to go raise up a new generation – very possibly the generation that will eradicate slavery. Go be inspired by your little world changers…..
**note: all of the amazing art is from our friends at http://www.BraveGirlsClub.com we think they rock :)