Papilio is a non-profit organization committed to fighting sex trafficking in Spain. The Papilio leadership team partners with local relief agencies such as the Red Cross as well as other NGOs and both the local and national Spanish Government to provide a unique presence on the frontlines through direct contact with women of all ages who through deception have become trafficking victims.
Papilio exists to bring comfort, humanitarian need, and love to the women on the streets with the hope of providing a means of rescue whenever possible. Team members head out to the streets, rain or shine, late in the evening to regularly build relationships with the women and even the club and brothel owners. On any given night they will interact with dozens of women working in the sex industry, providing offers of clothing, hot chocolate, and hygiene packs. They also bring hugs, comforting words and share resources that most are not aware of or have been scared to accept.
In addition to their frontline work on the streets, Papilio partners with local municipalities to provide anti-trafficking education in local high schools and to promote awareness in the communities. Since 2015 Papilio has rescued over 55 women and children, leading them to safe houses where they can experience healing, restoration, and training for their futures.
Those who serve with Papilio realize that the sex-trafficking issue is much greater than they have the ability to change however their hope and motivation comes in knowing they can and have made a difference in the lives of young women, one at a time.
Papilio means butterfly in Latin, and the name was chosen by the founders as a reminder that all people should have such freedom as the flight of a butterfly and that each young woman has such beautiful potential.
Volunteers with American Friendship Foundation provide their support for the work of Papilio through their fundraising and awareness efforts in the greater Seattle area. Funding is needed to acquire supplies to share with the women to continue making the evening street visits possible, to facilitate rescues when the opportunity occurs, and to support women in aftercare programs.
Due to the potential harm and risks involved, the identities of Papilio team members and the specific areas they work in are not published on-line to protect their safety. The organization is lead by a small, all volunteer but extremely passionate leadership team that personally provides much of the resources. Other support comes from occasional donors as they become aware of the work.