Panel discussion to follow with:
Anuradha Koirala, Founder and Executive Director of Maiti Nepal
Bishwo Khadka, Chief Executive Officer, Maiti Nepal
Brigitte Cazalis-Collins, Friends of Maiti Nepal
Joseph Collins, Friends of Maiti Nepal
Siddharth Kara, Fellow, Initiative to Stop Human Trafficking, Harvard Kennedy School
Jay Silverman, Associate Professor of Society, Human Development, and Health, Harvard School of Public Health
Moderated by: Timothy Patrick McCarthy, Lecturer and Director of the Human Rights and Social Movements Program, Carr Center, Harvard Kennedy School
Please join the Carr Center's Initiative to Stop Human Trafficking, Human Rights and Social Movements Program, The Boston Initiative to Advance Human Rights, and the MA Human Trafficking Task Force in welcoming Anuradha Koirala, the founder and Executive Director of Maiti Nepal, an organization focused on the rescue and rehabilitation of sex trafficked women and girls. Based in Kathmandu, Ms. Koirala has dedicated her life to combating human trafficking. THE DAY MY GOD DIED showcases her work and commitment to the women and girls of Nepal and lifts the veil of secrecy on child sex trafficking using footage from the brothels captured with spy camera technology. The child sex trade is a highly organized syndicate that rivals the drug trade in profitability. The industry has formed a pipeline, which starts in the villages of Nepal and feeds a continuous supply of girls to the urban brothels. Recruiters capture them, smugglers transport them, brothel owners enslave them, corrupt police betray them, and men rape and infect them. Every person in the chain profits except for the girls, who pay the price with their lives with a considerable amount becoming infected with HIV. But as THE DAY MY GOD DIED also shows, there is a growing movement from both within and outside of the brothels to put an end to this insidious crime. This heart-wrenching documentary provides a glimpse into the corruption and evil behind the curtain of the global sex industry, a world seldom seen by outsiders. THE DAY MY GOD DIED exposes crimes that not only occur far away, but also far closer to home than we may have imagined. For more information on the film and Maiti Nepal, please go to http://www.friendsofmaitinepal.org/
Light refreshments will be served.
Biographies of panelists:
Anuradha Koirala is the Founder and Executive Director of Maiti Nepal. Born in Nepal and former professor of English, Ms. Koirala started Maiti Nepal in a small house in Kathmandu with her own savings. Today, she is a widely recognized activist and lecturer who has dedicated her life to combating the sexual exploitation of women and children. Her accomplishments have been recognized through numerous awards. Her work is often dangerous and requires great personal sacrifice. The criminal elements that "deliver" young girls are a ruthless enemy and have political connections at the highest levels in India and Nepal. Maiti Nepal's main office in Kathmandu has been destroyed twice and Maiti workers must travel with a bodyguard when overseeing rescue missions in India. Her commitment has been an inspiration to her largely volunteer staff. Most of the workers are rescued girls and young women who are healthy enough to work. "They need little incentive from me," states Ms Koirala. "They are working to help their sisters and they know the horror of the victims." She adds, "Society rejects me and my girls, but they are the most important thing in my life."
Bishwo Ram Khadka has served as Chief Executive Officer of Maiti Nepal for 13 years. Originally trained in business management, he became aware of Maiti Nepal and the tragedy of the sexual exploitation of children. Being a father himself, he felt compelled to join the struggle against sex trafficking and make it his life’s work. He has assisted Anuradha Koirala in every aspect of Maiti Nepal both in Nepal and internationally. Over the years, he has helped to guide Maiti Nepal from its humble beginning in Nepal to a widely internationally recognized force against human trafficking. He is fluent in English, Nepali, Hindi.
Brigitte Cazalis-Collins and her husband have lived and worked in Nepal intermittently for more than twenty years. In 2001, she founded the Friends of Maiti Nepal as the official representative of Maiti Nepal in the United States. She has devoted her efforts to the struggle against human trafficking, increasing awareness of sex trafficking, and raising funds for Maiti Nepal. She has also directed and implemented major outreach projects assisting refugees and women both in the U.S. and in Nepal. In the U.S. she was a member of the founding board of the Tibetan Resettlement Project, which provided sponsors, housing, employment and counseling to Tibetan families who immigrated to the U.S. under the Immigration Act of 1992.
Joseph H. Collins has worked for many years as an economic advisor to various government ministries and the Central Bank of Nepal on a pro-bono basis. His company, J. H. Collins and Associates, together with the Harvard Law School Program on International Financial Systems and KPMG(India) have written and supervised the passage of legislation in Nepal to encourage foreign investment and economic development.
Siddharth Kara is an Affiliate of the Human Rights and Social Movements Program, and a Fellow with the Carr Centers Initiative to Stop Human Trafficking. He is also the author of Sex Trafficking: Inside the Business of Modern Slavery. Kara first encountered the horrors of slavery in a Bosnian refugee camp in 1995. Subsequently, he traveled to fourteen countries across four continents to research these crimes, interviewing over four hundred slaves, witnessing firsthand the sale of humans into slavery, and confronting those who trafficked and exploited them. His book provides a rare business and economic analysis of the global sex trafficking industry, and recommends legal and tactical measures to help abolish slavery once and for all. Kara advises on slavery for several organizations worldwide, including the Clinton Global Initiative and Humanity United. Since 2004, he has served on the board of directors of Free the Slaves. In 2005, he testified as an expert on human trafficking before the US Congressional Human Rights Committee. He serves on the committee founded by Kirk Douglas that is lobbying Congress to provide an official apology for pre-bellum slavery. In 2009, he was selected as a Fellow for the acclaimed TEDIndia conference. Previously, Kara was an investment banker at Merrill, Lynch, then ran his own finance and M&A consulting firm. He holds a Law degree from England, MBA from Columbia University, and BA from Duke University.
Jay G. Silverman, PhD, is a public health researcher whose work focuses on the improvement of practice in the prevention of violence against adolescent and adult women ( e.g. intimate partner violence, sexual assault, sex trafficking) in the U.S. and internationally. Dr. Silverman’s work has been broadly published in premier scientific journals such as the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) and New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) and includes co-authorship of the award-wining practitioner guidebook The Batterer as Parent: The Impact of Domestic Violence on Family Dynamics (Sage, 2002). Dr. Silverman was the lead author in a study published in the August 1, 2007 issue of JAMA on the rates of HIV infection amongst women and girls trafficked from Nepal to India. He is currently the Associate Professor of Society, Human Development, and Health and Director of Violence Prevention Programs at the Harvard School of Public Health.
Timothy Patrick McCarthy is Lecturer on History and Literature, Adjunct Lecturer on Public Policy, and Director of the new Human Rights and Social Movements Program at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. He also teaches in the Committee on Degrees in Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. An historian of social movements, Dr. McCarthy graduated with honors from Harvard College and received his Ph.D. in History from Columbia University, where he completed his dissertation under the direction of Eric Foner. Dr. McCarthy’s research agenda focuses on the relationship between human rights and social movements in three main areas: race relations and civil rights; LGBT politics, policy, and advocacy; and modern-day slavery and human trafficking. At the Carr Center, he runs a biweekly study group on Human Rights and Social Movements, and co-chairs, with Christina Bain, the Regional Working Group on Modern-Day Slavery and Human Trafficking. He has published two books – The Radical Reader: A Documentary History of the American Radical Tradition (New Press, 2003) and Prophets of Protest: Reconsidering the History of American Abolitionism (New Press, 2006) – and his third book, Protest Nation: The Radical Roots of Modern America, is forthcoming from the New Press in 2010. He is also currently at work on several other book projects. His essays and reviews have appeared in The Boston Globe, Journal of American History, In These Times, Gay and Lesbian Review Worldwide, Souls, Journal for the Study of Radicalism, Folha, and The Nation, and he is a regular contributor to radio, web, and other media outlets.