Child Slavery in the Ivory Coast

Children are being enslaved in the Cacao Industry

A Day In the Unpleasant Life

Imagine that you’re standing in a world.

A world much different than those found in anywhere but here. You’re overlooking a beautiful beach from a faraway distance. You’re standing barefoot on rough ground that almost makes your feet ich. You look down. Woodchips. You remember running around on them in elementary school on the playground as you and your friends played a game of tag. It’s not like that anymore. In this society you’ve been brought into, remorse is an insult. You wish you could relaxing with a glass of lemonade on that beach but your masters won’t let you. In this society, you don’t govern yourself when you want. You’re constantly told what to do. They take advantage of the fact you’re

not as big as them. They’ve covered so much land that it’s nearly impossible to escape. You would need to be faster than the winds of a tornado, something nobody’s done before. What’s the strongest kind of tornado again? A 5F? You can barely remember since you’ve never had an education. You would need to work to get one. But that’s no easy job. Out far away, a hammer bangs on wood. Every bang sends a signal of fear throughout your mind, that that could be you if you weren’t hurrying. If you tried to escape. Then something worse. A child’s scream silences the other sounds of the forest around you. This is a surprise there are even any sounds at all. Even some of nature fears the agitation and grief that looms all over taken anything necessary as prisoner. The scream echoes once. Twice. Three times. Third time’s a charm, right? No. Not here. Here, survival couldn’t be a better description. It’s not like in other places, where the homeless and weak are aided almost immediately. You’re down with some kind of suffering, nobody’s there to help in a flash. If you’re lucky, they would help you survive for one thing. Work.

As suffering as it is, this is what kids in Kenya go through almost every single day on cocoa farms to make the one tasty treat that people in America love: chocolate.

Child Slave

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What's the Reason to Care about this?

Now that you’ve taken a moment to picture this in your head, you probably realize what dreadful lives these children live.

It isn’t known exactly when child slavery started but one thing known is that it’s been going over for a very long time. Decades or perhaps centuries. The methods of treatment are unsettling to some and they’ll only continue longer on if nobody decides to put a stop to child labor altogether. Why should you care? Since you should’ve visualized what it’s like to be one of these children, the things you do, encounter and experience are things that you shouldn’t be exposed to. Being used as a slave has many not just unpleasant but harmful outcomes, such as getting beaten for not working hard enough, fast enough or trying to escape. This is only a small portion of what these children go through, suffering to make the chocolate people enjoy around the world. Except over there. So again. Why should you care?

Think about this the next time you reach for a piece of chocolate.
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Child Slave

One Solution. One Problem

There is a solution to stop child slavery.

Except there’s one problem. Look at it this way; the only people who have about the highest potential of extinguishing child labor are the chocolate companies that get their cocoa from the farms in Africa. They have to realize what’s going on and really take action and that’s the problem. They’re doing barely anything. Relatively little effort has been done to wipe out child slavery. Why? The companies who have that potential aren’t taking any action to really do anything worthy of breaking it down.

Sooner or later they’ll realize what they should’ve done and it hopefully won’t be too late by then.

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Hershey's Company Logo

What's the Future like for Child Labor?

Nothing’s really made a big change but there is a way everyone can help it happen.

There hasn’t been any true solution to end child slavery. The government is currently trying to figure that part out but there is something you as the reader might be able to do. You see, over the course of the years, what eventually may happen to child slavery is what happened to slavery in the South. There hopefully won’t be a war but instead, other countries (America especially) will help those parts of Africa that are poor have more money. That’s the reason for child labor altogether. There isn’t enough money for the cocoa farmers to be selling the cocoa on their own, so they have kids do it for them. Once those parts of Africa have enough money, child slavery will have no purpose and the farmers can finally do things on their own. But in the meantime, how can you help? Share this information with others. Let them know that by helping this conflict eradicate will put a smile on the faces of kids in Kenya and the Ivory Coast. Just remember not to plagiarize! Now that you’re a little more aware (and maybe a little bit smarter) you know what to do that can help. But by all means, don’t stress and feel that you have to do everything possible to put a final end to child labor. Do it little by little and let the government and chocolate companies take care of the rest in the (maybe near) future. Remember to stay sweet (in a good way)!

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