Fair Trade Jewelry and Ethical Fashion

Fair Trade Jewelry & Ethical Fashion

Lan’s Story of Hope in East Asia

by | Stories of Hope

Lan, Sex Trafficking Survivor and Rose Teardrop Earrings Artisan in East Asia

“I never expected to work in a brothel.

I had a normal, I would even say good, life before I was tricked into a job I would’ve never chosen.”

– Lan, Artisan in East Asia

(Read Time: 1.5 min.)

Life Was Good

Over 20 years ago, my husband and I moved to the city. We started our own business selling auto parts, and our dream life began. Our business took off, and we were able to buy an apartment and a car. We had a beautiful son and began the life we had left our family and village to build. Our dreams were coming true, and we were even able to send money back home to help our family.

Unexpected Tragedy

Then, unexpectedly, my husband got sick. He was diagnosed with a very aggressive skin cancer that needed immediate treatment. To afford the best treatment available, we began by selling our apartment, but eventually we had to sell everything, even our business, to try to save his life. Yet the cancer was too aggressive and spread quickly, taking his life within the year.

“After my husband passed away, my son and I were alone in the city. I had no home, no business, and no way to provide for us.” – Lan

Unexpected Expectations

East Asia

I was hopeful when my cousin, who runs a massage parlor, told me she could offer me a job. I was prepared to work hard to rebuild a life for me and my son, but I was not prepared for what was expected of me in this job. Having nowhere else to go, I stayed. I did what I had to do to provide for my family.

New Unexpected Hope

When COVID-19 broke out in our city, business was bad. Neighborhoods were locked down. Yet, this Artisan community’s outreach team still found a way to visit us and deliver care packages with essential items like masks and hand sanitizer. The team invited me to join their company to begin a new life in a stable job, making jewelry. I couldn’t believe it!

“So many times I tried to find a way to escape this life, but there seemed to be no way out.” – Lan, Sex Trafficking Survivor in East Asia

Lan, Artisan in East Asia - Rose Teardrop Earrings

“I jumped at the chance to change my life and be a good example to my son. I am so grateful for this opportunity to rebuild my life again.”

– Lan, Artisan in East Asia

More East Asia Blogs

Click on each photo below to discover more about our Artisan partners and products in EAST ASIA.

Bai, Artisan in East Asia

Bai’s Story of Hope in East Asia

Women Rescued from Brothels in East Asia

Fashion as a Force for Good, Chenny’s, Li Ya’s, & Hong Fay’s Stories of Hope in East Asia

Fay’s Story of Hope in East Asia

Helping Women in East Asia Heal From the Trauma of Sex Trafficking

Helping Women in East Asia Heal From the Trauma of Sex Trafficking

Ling, Artisan in East Asia

How Sisterhood is Rescuing Women from Brothels in East Asia

Mae, Artisan in East Asia

Restoring Hope to Victims of Sex Trafficking – Mae’s Story of Hope in East Asia

Fay, Artisan in North Asia

Stories of Hope in East Asia – Trades of Hope

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Trades of Hope

Trades of Hope