Posted in Aftercare
February 14th, 2018

From “A Nobody to Chosen”: Healing from Survivors’ Eyes

This is a picture of a wall in one of the aftercare centers I visit as a volunteer for Operation Underground Railroad and it happens to be one of my favorite things to look at. As survivors are brought into this aftercare center after being rescued they are asked to think about some of the words that they feel describe them. The words are then painted on the wall in black.

Some of the words painted on this wall in Spanish include; garbage, orphan, dirty, victim, a nobody, fearful, and abused. These are hard words to see someone use to describe themselves.

Over time these victims receive training, support, love, and counseling with the Aftercare center. They are taught about God and they are taught job skills, social skills, and most importantly of their worth.

Later the survivors are invited to write a new word that describes themselves. They paint over the black words and the new words are added to the wall in red.

The words in red include; saved, loved, peace, adopted, chosen, blessed, clean, and accepted.


Operation Underground Railroad rescues children from trafficking in countries all over the world. After the rescues we work hand in hand with quality aftercare centers to help these victims change the direction of their lives. They are taught skills and most importantly they move towards healing.

I love this wall. It is a simple testament to what Operation Underground Railroad works for. We want to help victims escape their horrific situations, and then we want to work to help them see themselves in a different light and be given a new chance at life

MikeĀ Johnson
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