Can you introduce yourselves?
My name is Corisande Hardy and I am a 17 year old who currently lives in Switzerland. My
entire life, my family has been moving around internationally, and as a result I have lived in 5
different countries. Because of this factor I identify with a lot of different cultures, however, I am
mostly American and British.
My name is Carley Barnhart and I am also 17 years old. Although I consider myself a true
Californian having lived there my first after living 16 years, I moved to Basel, Switzerland this
past August. Since I can remember, I have loved to read and use the stories as an escape. The
reason I resonate so much with the issue of sex trafficking is because these girls sadly often don’t
have an escape.
Where did you first learn of the issue of trafficking in Nepal?
We attended the Trust Women’s Conference in London this past fall. It was here that we had the
opportunity to watch SOLD for the first time. The film follows a 12 year old Nepalese girl who is
trafficked into India, and highlights the issue of sex trafficking without sugar coating it. We also
both take a Global Politics class, which highlights human rights issues. A combination of both
experiences showed us the extremities of trafficking in third world countries and within our own
What prompted you to start up M.A.S.T.?
It was the pure anger and frustration we felt after watching SOLD primarily. I think for both of
us, as young women ourselves, the atrocious actions that are taking place needed to be known.
We also realized that as we researched the issue more, the general public was unaware of the
degree of trafficking and that it was something that could happen in their own community.
What is it about this issue that affected you the most to set-up the organisation?
We felt that although we were 16 years old at the time of setting up the organization we could
create our own voices within our circles. Since both of us have moved a couple of times,
internationally and locally, we had a large span of individuals we could influence. It mostly
started with an urge to create conversation between individuals, as creating awareness in large
part can influence the rate of those being trafficked. Our ideology was that if we start honest and
real conversations about the issue of sex trafficking between colleagues, students, and friends,
then we have the ability to create a change.
What events have you organised so far with the organisation?
Our first event was one that we held at the international school we both attended last year.
Students were given the chance to watch the movie SOLD , as we felt it is not only a great way
to show the issue of sex trafficking to young adults, but also the movie stimulates a
conversation. Next, we had an individual who works for an NGO here in Switzerland committed
to going out and providing aide to those who have been trafficked, as well as Neerja, an actress
who was essentially a spokesperson for the movie. We felt that for our first event it was
important to showcase issue of sex trafficking in places like India and Nepal, but also within
Basel, Switzerland in order to parallel the two societies. Last month we traveled to Budapest to
show the movie to two different international schools in order to stress our cause and the ability
for students to make an international change. We are also currently looking into traveling to the
Netherlands and the US to speak to around 5 schools so we can create even more discussion
What are some of the things you hope to achieve for the organisation?
We really hope to achieve, if anything, an increased awareness and conversation about sex
trafficking. Often times it's almost considered a taboo topic, and we want diminish this
predisposition. In the future we are looking to have students around the world become
ambassadors, based on such a positive response from the schools we have visited so far, so
not only can they create their own change, but spread our organization to even more individuals
in order for this to be an international movement.
If you had any words of advice for anyone looking to do something similar what would
One of the biggest things we stress when presenting is that you just need to start. More often
than not individuals when faced with an ethical dilemma delve into a depressive state, or are not
really sure if they can make a difference. You have to put that all behind you and realize that
any small change or awareness you can create is still a change nonetheless and is simply a
step in the right direction. Another thing would also be that it takes time to see results. When
brainstorming ideas on how to go about creating a change it's often hard to see the end resul, or
the result of your efforts because more often than not its intangible. It is afterall impossible to
change the world in a day.
What do you think young people can be doing more of to make a difference to issues
across the world?
If you do not like something, or feel passionate about an issue you can create a difference.
Social media is something specific to our time and it gives us access to a multitude of different
individuals, so as result tweet, post, or message about it. We have such an influential tool at our
fingertips, and need to utilize it for the better! By doing this it once again stimulates conversation
and allows more individuals to gain a better understanding.
How can people find out more and get involved if they wish?
Great question! We just recently launched our website where you can find ways to get involved,
more information on sex trafficking, and monthly newsletter so you can gain a deeper
understanding of the issue. I urge anyone interested to send us a message on any of our other
social media handles, and we can suggest events going on in your area. Although, if you feel
that you do not have any free time, we do take donations that go towards Childreach's Taught
Not Trafficked campaign.