The Congregation of the Sisters of Mary Immaculate organised from 11 to 13 November 2022 a training programme for women religious in the diocese of Wa, Ghana, on human trafficking. The theme chosen was “Fighting Human Trafficking and Building the Future with Migrants and Refugees.” The training was facilitated by the Congregation of the Sisters of Mary Immaculate and the Missionaries of Africa (White Fathers). Among the participants were the Sisters of Mary Immaculate, the Handmaids of the Holy Child Jesus, the Society of the Holy Child Jesus, the Sisters of St Joseph of Lyon, the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary and the Congregation of St Therese of the Child Jesus. The Fathers of St Therese, the Society of the Missionaries of Africa, people from the office of the National Commission for Civic Education of Nandom and representatives of the Youth of St Joseph Parish attended the training as well.
On Saturday 12, participants reflected on the situation of human trafficking in Africa and pastoral orientations. While Sr. Marie Josepha, Regional Coordinator of the Project to Enhance the Engagement of Catholic Sisters in the Migrant Ministry in Africa, gave an overview of human trafficking in Africa, Fr. Avelino Chico S.J., Regional Coordinator for Africa of the Migrants and Refugees Section of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, spoke about Pastoral orientations on human trafficking. In addition to taking place on a daily basis, according to Sr. Marie Josepha, human traffickers use various methods to procure victims. The Pastoral orientations, published in 2019 by the Migrants and Refugees Section, are accessible in several languages and offer pastoral guidelines to address this problem. They also provide tools to reintegrate victims and survivors of human trafficking into society.
The training included a field programme and awareness-raising campaign. Participants went to create awareness on human trafficking at Jirapa Senior High School and St. Francis Girls Senior High School. On Sunday, they attended three masses at St Joseph’s Parish in Jirapa, ST Joseph’s Hospital in Jirapa and the Tizza community, a big outstation of the Parish, to engage the faithful on the need to combat human trafficking. The programme concluded with a radio talk show on Radio Gangaa in Jirapa.
Sr. Pia Panpogee SMI