July 18, 2018
Selah* lived with her mother inside Myanmar. She never knew her father.
Selah's mother needed to work in another city so a couple in her village offered to pay her travel costs in exchange for her daughter. The mother agreed and Selah was bought at age 9 for $74 to be a servant in the couple's home.
One day when Selah was in the market, she unexpectedly saw her aunt. Selah told her she had been sold and at her request, the aunt agreed to take her in. However, the couple demanded repayment for providing the girl with free room and board. The aunt paid $31 to buy Selah back.
It did not take long to realize that something was really wrong. First, they found out that Selah had contracted TB, so she began treatment. She also couldn’t walk properly, she was bleeding often and was unable to control her bodily functions so they returned to the clinic for a full medical evaluation. The doctors discovered Selah had severe damage from abuse - so severe that it required surgery to repair.
It wasn’t until much later that Selah was able to open up about all that had happened to her. The husband had raped her repeatedly and the wife knew. Instead of calling the police, she was emotionally abusive to Selah as well.
The doctors said Selah couldn’t have the necessary surgery until her TB treatment was over. Because of the extended commitment, the aunt was unwilling to help so Selah came into our emergency care.
Ku Ku cared for Selah with so much sensitivity, dignity and compassion. As a 10 year old, Selah had to have continual attention for her physical trauma from the abuse. Our staff was extremely discreet so she would not feel embarrassed or ashamed.
We created a treatment plan to help her recover from her trauma and within three months, we saw remarkable improvement mentally, emotionally and socially.
When the TB treatment was complete, we took her to the clinic to prepare for her operation. However, the doctors discovered that her injuries were completely healed and she no longer needed an operation. We knew it was the Lord healing her physically, both through the one-on-one consistent love and care from our team and in miraculous ways we could not explain.
As she understood more about how her own experiences had impacted her, she was finally able to process all that she had been through with our counselors. Selah also began to understand God's love and we watched her transform from a broken little girl, buried in shame into a confident young lady whose smile fills a room.
We knew that Selah needed the love and support of a family to continue the healing process. When we determined there was not a safe care option within her own family, we recruited and equipped a loving family through the local church.
Selah is now thriving in her new family and is a part of our teen artisan program learning life-skills and creating jewelry at Sojourn Studio.
She is not a commodity to be bought, used and sold. No child is.
*Names have been changed to protect identities.