We had the good fortune of connecting with Giselle Meza and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Giselle, so before we jump into specifics about your story and work, let’s start higher level. What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned along your journey?
The most important lesson I have learned along my journey in life of serving others is to follow your passion and your heart with faith. . This has empowered me over my 20 year journey through my work as founder at Puresa Humanitarian / (PURESA.ORG); to reach, rescue, and restore the lives of victims and survivors of human trafficking. ‘Changing lives + Creating hope’ This God-given calling in my life to serve others world-wide with love, compassion and dignity has brought me the most joy and healing in life, along with being a mother. This lesson of following your calling and passion has been the rewarding foundation for my work and life, and one that I share with my sons. “Be joyful everyday, love what you do and have faith by following your passion, your heart, and soul . Be aware that you are on this earth for a greater purpose. All of which you do daily can make a difference in others lives which will bring you purpose, happiness, freedom, and fulfillment in this journey of life.”
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Giselle Meza Founder, Puresa Humanitarian I experienced the unthinkable as a child. Victimized, tricked and trafficked at the tender young age of 14 years old. After miraculously escaping and surviving my experience, I created a very personal life-long mission to serve, rescue and restore the lives of innocent children and women around the world who have been trafficked. In my adult career as a high-profile model, I traveled to over 58 countries around the world. While on assignment, the horrific injustices of the sexual slavery epidemic were unfolding before my very eyes. It was shortly thereafter that I felt compelled to create and provide realistic and tangible solutions for victims of human trafficking, and Puresa Humanitarian was born. Puresa Humanitarian offers complete 24 hour care, safe homes, services and education for the children, and the opportunity for self-sustainability and economic independence for the rescued women. Self-sustainability diminishes the risk of re-victimization and helps to break the cycle of human exploitation and slavery, freeing them from a life of forced prostitution and enslavement. I can regularly be found on the front lines in remote villages, slums, and brothel areas, with the most impoverished and at risk of West Bengal, India. Puresa Humanitarian works in this region where so many innocent, destitute children, teens, and young women are easy vulnerable targets for human traffickers. When in the United States, I focus on being a voice for victims and survivors, creating awareness via interviews on television, editorial press, and as a sought-after voice at speaking engagements on Anti Human Trafficking awareness, education, and prevention. Both locally and nationally. Most recently I had the honor of being invited to our nations capital as a survivor panelist to the US Department Of Transportation Advisory Committee on Human Trafficking as part of their “Put The Brakes On Human Trafficking” campaign in Washington DC. I was humbled and Empowered to use my voice as a survivor to give an impactful and inspiring presentation to the Department Of Transportation Advisory Committee on Human Trafficking. My input on the intersection of transportation and personal experience of human trafficking helped to inform the Committee’s Final Report. I am excited that I was heard, my voice speaking out on behalf of countless victims and survivors. I am very proud and blessed to be part of helping to combat human trafficking not only internationally, but now with my voice as part of being a survivor panelist for “Put The Brakes On Human Trafficking” in the United Sates of America which will help implement new laws to save many lives. The decades of my work’s devotion, my plight and love for innocent victims along with my own life story shared with the world, have made a difference. It is a great privilege to work with these precious human beings who have been robbed of their human rights. I am grateful for the opportunity and platform to speak out on behalf of the voiceless and share the horrors and realities of human trafficking along with my own personal story to be part of a solution to help break the cycle of human exploitation and sexual slavery. It is by joining together that we can make change happen, empowering and making a difference on these innocent victims for years to come. Every Human Life Deserves Dignity and Freedom, No Life Should Ever Be For Sale.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
If my best friend was coming to India, I would take them to our Safe Homes to visit and meet our precious rescued little girls and children and spend a fun day playing with them. Then I would take them to my favorite book store cafe in the city of Calcutta, and to my favorite getaway cafes which are peaceful but very worldly. Moving on to local sustainable artisan shops where you can have delicious traditional street food as well as vegan flavorful dishes with colorful spices. Then “A Must” , we would visit one of my favorite quiet and sacred places to meditate, pray and think which is “Mother House”. Mother Teresa’s House of the Missionaries of Charity, the headquarters of their congregation, it has been home to Mother Teresa and her sisters since 1953.It is here where Mother Teresa lived and where her body is laid to rest. For me it is such a special place I have gone to gather my thoughts and strength since I began working in Nepal and India with victims and survivors, from here I always come out with renewed strength for “The City Of Joy” which is Kolkata. Then you must visit the MALLIK GHAT Flower market, fascinating and colorful, one of the most unique experiences of your life. It is the largest flower market, not only in India, but all of Asia. The hustle and bustle, vendors, fragrances, flowers, and the multitude of vibrant hues represent the picture of vigor of life in Kolkata. This flower market was built in 1855 and is a historical part of the city’s history. From here you will also see the Howrah Bridge on the Hooghly River, where you will experience a multitude of people bathing, praying, you will smell scents like never before along the path of incense and temples. Then I would finish off the trip by visiting our rescued ladies beautiful workshops, full of handmade products which are empowering their lives. Lastly finishing off by flying to Jaipur for 2 days. Visiting ancient palaces, my favorite local outdoor Indian restaurants and beautiful gardens full of peacocks, moghal palaces and museums and introduce them to my friends in Jaipur which will welcome all with Love and Honor.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I dedicate my Shoutout to all those who have partnered with us and helped support our organization, with love, prayers, and much needed financial support throughout the years. We could not save the lives of innocent victims of human trafficking without their partnership, dontations and support. Helping us provide “A way out of slavery” so that these victims may have freedom, hope and the life that they deserve. And a Big Shoutout to my sons who have walked this journey and unknown path every step of the way. Love and Thanks to my Family.
Facebook: Puresa Humanitarian