Untold Stories from Nepal | Hasri

[Content trigger warnings: Child trafficking and sexual exploitation]

“She needed a lot of medical assistance but no-one wanted to help her.”

This devastating story serves not only as a reminder of the darkness that can lurk within the world, but it also embodies the strength and resilience of the human spirit.

Hasri’s* early years were not filled with the joy and love her innocent soul deserved. After her mother died, she was raised by her grandmother in a small village in the foothills of the Himalayas. 

But Hasri’s family came from one of the lowest castes. The entrenched system, despite being officially outlawed by the Nepali government, sees people from the lowest castes violently targeted and forced to work menial, dirty and hazardous jobs.

They are some of the poorest people, with the worst educational and health outcomes of any other group in Nepal.

With few opportunities to provide for her grandchild, Hasri’s grandmother was the perfect target for traffickers, who preyed on her vulnerabilities.

We’ll never know if Hasri’s grandmother sold her for the money, or was lured by the false promise of a better life, or perhaps a combination of them both. 

Terrified and alone, Hasri was trafficked across the border into India, where she was made to work in one of the many brothels–forced to do unspeakable things. Her tiny body was so badly abused she had little energy to fight.

Hasri doesn’t know how long she was kept as a sex slave, but when she did manage to escape, she could no longer walk properly. She was just eight years old when she came to the women’s safe haven.

Staff at 3 Angels Nepal desperately tried to get her the medical attention she needed, but the stigma attached to her as a victim of sexual exploitation, coupled with her caste, made her untouchable.

“We fought for six months to get her treatment,” explained Sarah, co-founder of 3 Angels Nepal.

“It was one of the most painful situations I have witnessed. Her legs were covered in sores, which were badly infected. She could barely stand and struggled to walk.

“She needed a lot of medical assistance but no-one wanted to help her.”

Thanks to the dogged determination of staff at 3 Angels Nepal, Hasri eventually got the medical intervention she needed. But the mental and physical scars left behind from her trauma deeply affected her.

She stayed at the women’s safe haven for five years, receiving counselling, love and support, before moving on to home for trafficked teenage girls.

Your support today will give girls like Hasri the immediate medical intervention they need, and prevent the continued suffering and long wait times they are currently facing.

*Name changed and representational image used to protect Hasri’s identity