Meet Malou T.

 

This young Filipina teenager was just 16 years old when she began working as a waitress to help her impoverished family make ends meet. Little did Malou know that the restaurant where she worked became a bar at night.

Soon enough, Malou was asked to fill evening shifts at the bar. At night, the girl’s job was to use any means possible to encourage male customers to drink more alcohol and spend more money.

Malou’s mother did not know that her teenager was being objectified and exploited at work.

After several months, Malou grew sick of undignified work and began to desire a different life for herself. Around the same time, a good friend of hers introduced Malou to our partner organization, Samaritana Transformation Ministries.

Not long after, the teenager was hired and began working at Samaritana’s training centre, where she received skill training to provide her with a dignified means of income, as well as emotional and spiritual care for her traumatic experiences in poverty and exploitation.

Today, Malou loves her work:

“Making jewelry is therapeutic for me,” she told us.

“Just like there are many different colours of beads on jewelry, I have gone through many things and many trials, but God has helped me to learn how to accept them.”

Since joining the team at Samaritana, Malou has married and had several children. She also has become a leader at work; rather than making jewelry, Malou now prepares, designs, and checks the quality of pieces that are made by her team.

“I feel good when others buy what I make, because it comes from my heart and I worked hard to make them,” Malou shared with us. “When others purchase them, they inspire me and my co-trainees to change, because it truly helps a lot with our needs.”

Thank you for empowering Malou and others like her to provide for themselves—you are truly changing lives, one purchase at a time.