The Rise of Sexual Exploitation of Children (OSEC)
Tens of thousands of Filipino girls are suffering from horrific abuse as the sex trade in the Philippines continues to grow. During the pandemic lockdowns worldwide, cases of online sexual exploitation of children (OSEC) in the Philippines has skyrocketed.
OneChild is battling this abuse by partnering with Happy Horizons Children’s Ranch, a place where rescued girls can heal and grow.
What is OSEC?
Online sexual exploitation of children, or OSEC, is the act of using the Internet and other digital platforms to sexually abuse children. OSEC is often extremely violent as online predators from around the world pay to watch abuse, and victims may be as young as a year old.
- The largest number of OSEC cases are found in the Philippines
- 2 in 10 children in the Philippines are vulnerable to becoming victims of online sexual exploitation and abuse.
- In 2018 alone, 600,000 sexualized photos of Filipino children were bartered and traded online.
Welcome to Hope. Welcome to Happy Horizons Children’s Ranch.
Happy Horizons Ranch is run by child advocates in the Philippines who, for 25 years, have been helping girls heal from sexual abuse.
When first rescued, the girls stay at Happy Horizons for a week or longer, depending on their needs. But the ranch is more than a temporary shelter – most girls, some as young as two or three when they arrive, live at the ranch until they are 18 years old.
At the ranch, the girls are given an educational plan designed to meet their specific needs, always rooted in God. They also have peer mentors, and receive ongoing schooling, counseling, and medical care.
We are proud to partner with Happy Horizons Children’s Ranch, a place where rescued kids can heal and grow.
One Child’s Story
Meet Cherry *. She is 17 years old. At age 12 she was a survivor of the online sexual exploitation that is rampant in the small town where she once lived. Thankfully, she was rescued and is now living at Happy Horizons Ranch.
Cherry still faces daily struggles but is described as a fighter and is determined to overcome past abuse.
“Sometimes, I am scared that my past might happen again when I go out of the Ranch,” Cherry shares with us. But she calms her fears by reciting Jeremiah 29:11, her favorite verse:
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
One of the biggest lessons Cherry has received from living at the Ranch is knowing that God has a greater purpose in her life.
“I have learned that no matter what my past may be, God has a purpose in my life. He is looking in my heart, not in my appearance or my past or how broken I am. He helps me to become a better person and know that I am loved by Him.” She also has a message to other kids who went through the same trauma that she did: “I want them to know how much God loves and cares for them, no matter what they have been through, and that God has a purpose for their lives.”
* Name changed for child privacy.
As a community of Child Champions, OneChild is passionate about supporting the much-needed work of Happy Horizons Ranch. With the rise of OSEC in the Philippines the need is greater than ever. Will you give today to help girls heal from sexual exploitation and abuse?
Source: https://www.ijm.org/documents/Final-Public-Full-Report-5_20_2020.pdf, https://www.unicef.org/philippines/press-releases/saferkidsph-advocates-stop-online-sexual-abuse-and-exploitation-children, https://www.state.gov/reports/2020-trafficking-in-persons-report/philippines/