I was fortunate enough to take several classes of Seane’s while she was in Chicago and hear her speak about activism; I greatly admired her compassion towards some of the major problems in the world.
More importantly, Seane speaks with such a sense of purpose and sincerity, that the impact is felt by anyone who attends her events; she shares personal stories of suffering and triumph and truly bares her soul.
Seane teaches yoga as way not only to improve yourself—but as a way to make the world a better place. Her knowledge, rich from her years of activism and teaching yoga, gives her incredible insight into the human condition.
She has gone into some of the most poverty stricken areas of the world, where children are starving to death and young girls are forced into prostitution; she teaches yoga and provides support for child labor, as well as educating people about HIV/AIDS prevention.
During her lecture, she spoke about how when she was in Cambodia, she negotiated with pimps to let some young girls go, only to have put them placed into an orphanage; she explained, in vivid detail, how she walked through one of the prostitution houses and how the mothers were right next to the girls.
Some of these countries are so poor that families force their children into prostitution; human sex trafficking is the third largest criminal industry, after drugs and arms trafficking. In India alone, up to one hundred million people are involved in human trafficking.
These criminals prey on some of the most vulnerable children, most of which don’t have a chance to escape this cruelty.
Children are being kidnapped on the street, drugged, beaten into submission and forced into prostitution.
It’s estimated that over 1.2 million children in India are prostitutes; it is estimated that 2 to 3 million adults are prostitutes. India has become the second largest number of people in the world living with HIV/AIDS in the world, second to South Africa.
Unfortunately, politicians and local police forces have not been prosecuting human traffics, due to the level of corruption. Human trafficking is an estimated thirty-six billion dollar criminal industry and these criminal’s pay off corrupt officials.
Seane works with local organizations to provide aid to some of the problems; she works on bringing refugee, rehabilitation and economic opportunity, to people suffering or who have suffered from this.
Seane and her partners, Hala Khouri, Suzanne Sterling, of Off the Mat, Into The World, created the Seva Challenge to help bring attention and aid into the parts of the world that need it the most. Currently, for the 2012 Seva Challenge, which will be focused on sex trafficking in India, they have raised over $450,000 dollars.
Here are some other inspiring numbers, from past challenges: $524,000 in 2008 for the Cambodia Seva Challenge, $577,000 in 2009 for the Uganda Seva Challenge, $550,000 in 2010 for the South Africa Seva Challenge and $376,000 in 2011, for the Haiti Seva Challenge.
Anyone, from any walk of life, can learn something from Seane’s approach to teaching; it doesn’t matter what you do in the world.
I highly recommend taking one of Seane’s workshops, if you ever have the opportunity.
Editor: Bryonie Wise
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