Victims Voices: Jacob

Jacob received assistance through the NGO ‘The Cradle’ in Kenya

Lured by promises of schooling and a job as a houseboy, 13-year-old Jacob left his village in Kenya and accompanied some men to Nairobi. Once there, they told him the plans had changed. The men took Jacob to Mombasa and made him hunt for scrap metal to sell. 

If he didn’t find enough, he was forced to
beg in the streets and would go to sleep hungry. He had no way to contact his family or seek help.

After several months, Jacob ran away and fled to the nearby town of Malindi, but when he couldn’t feed himself from begging, he started committing petty crimes. Soon he was arrested. The CRADLE, an organization that provides legal aid services to children, stepped in to help. It got a court to declare Jacob in need of care and protection, and criminal charges were dropped. The CRADLE provided Jacob with counseling and reunited him with his family.

Jacob, now 14, is happy to be home. He is studying hard so he can get into a national secondary school. About his future he says, “I would like to be a teacher or a policeman who helps people when they are in trouble.”

The CRADLE – the Children Foundation provides direct support to trafficked children in Kenya, including temporary shelter, medical treatment, trauma counseling, legal aid and reintegration support. It also raises awareness of children’s rights, and advocates for policies and laws to help protect children.

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