Young girls have to be aware that danger lurks behind the most innocent activities – and giving away too much personal information on social networks can expose them to possible human trafficking.
Speaking at Aurora Girls High School in Zola, Soweto, on 23rd March, Mrs Marcia Pires, motivational speaker and founder of Women in Action (WiA), said it was vital for girls to become aware of the dangers of using social networks.
Aurora is the only girls school in Soweto. Surrounded by mixed schools, it's naturally the place where local boys visit to look for girlfriends.
Mrs Pires spoke about different forms of exploitation which include sex exploitation, forced slavery drug trafficking, domestic servitude and organ transplantation.
She said about 27 million people worldwide were "slaves". In South Africa 30,000 children were involved in sex exploitation, 260,000 enslaved in some way and about 40,000 people were trafficked across the country's borders.
Mrs. Pires advised the girls not to upload too many personal details on their profiles win using different social networks such as Facebook, BBM and Mix-it because those promoting human trafficking used such information to find victims.
It was clear at the end of the talk that many girls in the school were not well informed about human trafficking and as a result did not see a problem in chatting to strangers.
Mrs Maselwane, the school principal, expressed her appreciation for the talk by WiA and asked the group to visit regularly.
By Nomsa Masengemu