Arising from the ashes

The story of a woman rescued through the anti-human trafficking work of OM Ghana.

The first night, at 4 a.m., Merry was awakened by her madam. “Wear this.” In her hands were a short skirt and a revealing top. “What kind of job is this?” Merry asked, surprised. She soon found out.

The first car stops and the man inside says he’ll pay her more than five times her normal price if she comes with him to his house to sleep with him all night. Naïve as she is, she says yes and after 30 minutes in the car she observes the neighbourhood. “Where are you taking me?” she asks, because the place looks dangerous. That’s when she gets her first slap.

When they finally reach the destination—bush in the middle of nowhere—she gets out of the car. She’s raped by the man, then again by his friend and then again and again. All together six times, six men, no protection. She can’t fight, she just waits until they finish. Afterwards the man drives her back, gives her a ridiculous amount of money and disappears in the darkness.

“So what? That is not my problem that you got raped. You can take care of yourself,” says her madam after Merry reports what happened. All she gets is rejection and a beating if she refuses to go out again.  After one month the police came and took all 50 girls along with their “madams”.  “I don’t want to go back to Nigeria. My family… if they find out what I’ve been doing they’ll hate me. They’ll disown me! I will suffer… .” So she clings to a vision of opening her own hairdressing salon here in Ghana. She would like to give the country another chance. She’ll arise from the ashes and make her family proud instead.

* name changed


By OM International