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Talitha Kum, combatting human trafficking in nearly 100 nations

In its 2021 Report, the international Talitha Kum network documents an increase in human trafficking victims, but evidences the religious sisters' network's always greater and more global effort to concretely fight, prevent and bring awareness to the scourge.

By Deborah Castellano Lubov

Despite the increase in human trafficking during the Covid-19 pandemic, Talitha Kum has boosted its activities to combat the scourge in the nearly 100 countries in which it operates.

This was evidenced in Talitha Kum's 2021 Report, published on Tuesday, summarizing the activities of the past year and outlining the commitments for the years to come.

Talitha Kum is a Rome-based international network of religious sisters dedicated to combatting and eradicating human trafficking. It was founded at the International Union of Superiors General (UISG).

Human Trafficking produces 150 billion dollars annually

There are tens of thousands of victims of human trafficking each year, 72% of whom are women.

According to statistics, human trafficking produces annual total revenue of 150 billion dollars.

The Report—now available in English and soon to be made available in Italian, Spanish and French—offers a summary of the activities of the past year and an outline of the commitments for the years to come.

The Report

The Report was produced by Talitha Kum with the contribution of the Global Solidarity Fund.

The research was made possible in collaboration with the Faculty of Social Sciences at the Pontifical Gregorian University, with the coordination of Professor Peter Lah and Sister Mayra Cuellar.

The collection and analysis of the data for the Talitha Kum Report involved all the regional and local networks.

Talitha Kum in nearly 100 countries

In 2021, the report shows, Talitha Kum saw a numerical and qualitative increase in its activities, despite the Covid-19 pandemic posing greater challenges to the network's preventative activities.

Talitha Kum is present in 92 countries with 55 national networks, an increase of five more than last year, and 6,039 people actively involved in antitrafficking in all continents.

It has reached 336,958 people globally.

Of these, 258,549 benefitted from prevention activities, while 19,993 are victims and survivors being supported and 58,416 are involved in networking, formation and capacity building.

Increased violence against women

Comboni Sister Gabriella Bottani, coordinator of Talitha Kum International, noted that in the past year, the network has seen great pain caused by violence, conflict and war.

“Violence against women has increased, as has been noted by all networks, especially in Latin America.”

The recent increase in those suffering from hunger, she also said, caused large movements of human beings.

“Trafficking," she warned, "is profoundly connected with these movements. “

During the year, Talitha Kum networks recorded a dramatic increase in the injustices suffered by migrating populations, who, she said, "are ever more vulnerable to sexual and labour exploitation, as well as to forced marriages and begging.”

'Tireless and prophetic efforts'

Sister Nadia Coppa, president of the UISG, thanked the members of the Talitha Kum Coordination Committee, for "the tireless and prophetic efforts" in fighting human trafficking, exploitation and in eliminating all forms of slavery.

“The commitment of Talitha Kum has grown throughout the years, achieving important results that fill our hearts with hope and of faith in the future, even though the road is long and there are many steps that still need taking,” she said.

The Report highlighted various 2021 initiatives, including the launch of the first Call to Action, the “Young Ambassadors of Talitha Kum” initiative, and the International Day of Prayer and Awareness against Human Trafficking.

To read the 2021 Report, visit

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28 June 2022, 13:55