Wednesday, March 22, 2017

ONLY THE BEGINNING(but the end of my DTS)

Hey everyone,
    Sorry for taking so long to send out an update letter! It has been a crazy few weeks trying to get settled back in to everyday life! I want to thank everyone for all your support over the past 6 months! It has been a life changing experience! I’m not sure where or how to begin to describe all that I saw and did. So please bare with me as I try to breakdown a packed schedule over the past few months into a few short paragraphs.
So to start off I want to fill everyone in on what the first few months, called lecture phase, looked like. We had lessons on various topics and then in the afternoons we would do our “duties” to help keep the base functioning well. I got blessed with the work duty of being the nanny for some of the most amazing children living on the base. On Friday evenings (or Saturday mornings?) we’d get up at 3am and go out on to the streets where women were being trafficked. We would pass out gift bags and talk to the woman. Side note it takes years of positive encounters for trafficking victims to even consider leaving life in the sex industry due to stolkholm  syndrome and many other factors.
 After the first 3 months of training we left for Greece. In Greece we did a lot of prevention work in the Refugee camps and were able to minister to the children and families. (Impoverished people are easily susceptible to trafficking). It was so challenging to see the devastation through out all of the refugee camps; many of them came from lavished lifestyles. It broke my heart to see the living conditions and not be to help everyone. It’s hard to even put into words what it was like but I would love to sit down and talk about it more but I feel that some of it is too heavy to throw around on the internet.
After a month is Greece we headed to France for a month and a half. The work there was a bit more tangible. There were many different ways we worked to end human trafficking such as awareness, giving out gift bags, and meeting with the girls! One of my favorite ministries was one that we met with girls being sold from Nigeria. They spoke English, which made it a lot easier for communication. We would go out on the streets and invite the girls to come to the local pizza shop and do a “bible study” with them (anywhere between 20-45girls show up). We were able to talk more in depth with the girls and hear many of their stories and speak value and identity into them. One girl took the help that was offered and left the streets! As I mentioned before it can take years to get those being trafficked to even view themselves as more than just an object and even begin to see themselves as valuable so this was very exciting to hear how quickly this young girl chose to leave.
My time away has deepened my desire to see an end to modern day slavery. Seeing these victims of human trafficking face to face and hearing their stories has truly set a passion in my heart. I will be continuing this work as I am planning to go back to LA in June. There I will be doing awareness and local outreaches to the woman who have fallen prey to sexual exploitation. If you would like to hear more about what I will be doing I would LOVE to meet up and talk about it!
In order to continue this work I will need to have long-term financial support. Please take time to consider helping to end human trafficking through supporting me! Even if you cannot support financially I would still love to sit down and share with you more about what I will be doing!  Thank you for all of your support!
   With much love
            Dani Cupo

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