Alma - a child with hope
Preventing child trafficking
Trafficking is a global problem affecting large numbers of children every year. Children and their families are often lured by the promise of better employment and a more prosperous life far from their homes. Children who have been trafficked in Albania often end up working as slaves in households and girls can end up in the sex industry or begging in the streets.

Little Alma is an 11-year-old Romany girl. She lives in a shack in the suburbs of Tirana with her family, which includes three brothers and a sister. Her parents are illiterate and unemployed and often resort to begging on the streets.

There is an FBSH centre in her town. FBSH is an Albanian non-governmental organisation. The initials stand for Children of the World and of Albania. Alma is a child who, if it had not been a result of the support she and her family receives from a local youth centre, may have ended up a victim of child trafficking.

Alma has been going to school at the FBSH centre for two years and the staff have worked hard to ensure her integration into school life. Alma enjoys going to school and is even eager to study
throughout the summer - just so that she will be ready for the new school year.

This is quite an achievement considering her background. Her parents could not afford to send her to school and it was her responsibility to look after the younger family members while her mother was begging on the streets of Tirana.

When her parents are away, Alma takes care of the whole family. She cleans the shack, cooks, bakes bread and feeds the children. From the support she receives through the FBSH centre, Alma is provided with a degree of safety and hope for the future.