shield arrow-simple-alt-top arrow-simple-alt-left arrow-simple-alt-right arrow-simple-alt-bottom facebook instagram linkedin medium pinterest rss search-alt shaper twitter video-play arrow-long-right arrow-long-left arrow-long-top arrow-long-bottom arrow-simple-right arrow-simple-left arrow-simple-bottom readio arrow-simple-top speaker-down plus minus cloud hb pin camera globe cart rotate Group-35 star edit arrow-top arrow-right arrow-left arrow-bottom check search Close square speaker-up speaker-mute return play pause love new-tab equalizer

Three Boys Rescued from Child Labour and Trafficking in Ghana

ACCRA, GHANA – The Ghana police and Department of Social Welfare joined IJM on 20 June to carry out an operation to rescue three boys from trafficking and child labour victims on Lake Volta and bring them to safety.

The three boys, ages 10, 12 and 16 had been trafficked to work for fishermen on boats for long, gruelling hours. They were forced to wake at dawn and work long into the afternoon mending nets, diving deep underwater to untangle nets caught beneath the surface, and hauling in the day's catch.

During the operation, members of the community threatened to attack the rescue team. IJM Ghana's Aftercare Coordinator, Gabriel, praised the role of the police in assisting with the operation:

“The police did extremely well in protecting both the staff and rescued children. I am thankful to them they were willing to even provide us with security at the processing centre where the children were supported immediately after rescue. They showed their commitment and understanding during this operation.”

Five suspects were arrested and released on bail. Following arrest and initial court hearing, one suspect pleaded guilty to the charges of trafficking and has been sentenced to 8 years imprisonment.

After he was brought to safety, 10-year-old Divine* said, “The work was hard, too hard for me. I do not want to go back there.”

The three boys have taken COVID tests and been placed in a temporary care home. They are receive proper medical care and education until their families can be traced and assessed for safe reintegration.

This rescue operation was the culmination of months of work between the IJM Ghana team, Ghanaian police and Ghana's Department of Social Welfare to identify suspected traffickers on the lake and develop a plan for bringing the children to safety.

IJM's work rescuing children trapped in trafficking and child labour on Lake Volta would not be possible without this partnership.

*A pseudonym

Stock image used with consent.

Become a Freedom Partner Today

You might also be interested in…

About Stories see more
Twenty Years Enslaved at a Mango Farm – Now Free

Survivor Leaders in the Released Bonded Labourers Association (RBLA) rallied authorities to rescue a couple who had been enslaved at a mango farm for about 20 years. IJM had known about this couple since 2016, but they were always too scared to ever share the truth about their experience, due to the power of the owner.
Joint operation rescues 4 minors, arrests 2 suspects of online sexual exploitation of children

An Aussie police tip-off has led Philippine authorities to rescue 4 young children from cybersex trafficking and arrest their guardians. The 3 girls and 1 boy were aged between 2 and 8. Tragically, they were in the care of a couple who instead of protecting them, offered to livestream their sexual abuse in exchange for money.⠀

Social Media Helps IJM Partner NGO Rescue of 56 from a Brick Kiln

IJM and our casework partner Jai Bhim Vikas Shikshan Sansthan (JBVSS) supported a complicated rescue operation in the state of Haryana. Fifty-six people—including many young children and babies—were brought out of bondage at a brick kiln, aided by the use of social media during the COVID-19 lockdown.

Ghana Rescue During Lockdown - 3 Children Free from Child Slavery

During May's lockdown, IJM and partners conducted an operation to rescue three children, two boys and one girl, who had been trafficked into the fishing industry, which is notorious for the trafficking of children to work on Ghana's Lake Volta. IJM continues its preventative, protective and restorative work to ensure children are safe and traffickers are held to account.

You Can Help Send Rescue Today.

When you give a gift today, you’ll be fighting slavery, violence, and injustice across the globe. Together, we can end slavery and violence in our lifetime.

You can make the most impact as a Freedom Partner today.

Your generous monthly support will help send rescue to vulnerable children and families at a moment’s notice, stand with them as they rebuild their lives in freedom and have perpetrators held accountable.

Login

Donor Portal

Review your giving, tax statements and contact info via the IJM Donor Portal.

please sign in
Email Sign Up
Get updates from IJM on stories from the field, events in your area and opportunities to get involved.
sign up