Right after the question "Are you ready to go to Thailand?" the second question is: "What will you do?" The easy answer is that I will be working the Thai IJM staff to help establish a new initiative combating child sexual assault. But what does that mean?
I've been trying to wrap my mind around this. Yesterday, I started to watch Sex Crimes Unit on HBO. I was amazed to learn that 40 years ago in New York (like many other states), it was just as difficult to obtain a conviction for sexual assault as it is in many of the countries IJM works with today.
That blew my mind.
We are in a place where the "rule of law" is a banner we hang high, where justice can be had for all. But, if we're honest with ourselves, we're not far from when we were a "developing" country. In fact, 35 years is barely one generation.
Discovering this fact, my hope grew. This is something that can be changed in one generation.
It doesn't really answer the question. I'm sure I'll be able to better explain in just a few weeks. But for now I understand that it will be heavy, awkward, heartbreaking, and hopeful.
I can't wait to share more as I know more. To find out more, visit http://www.ijm.org/ourwork/whatwedo and download the "Sexual Violence" factsheet and "Hill Tribe Citizenship" pdfs on the lower right of the screen.
Less than 48 hours before we head to the airport.