Gibco Hero for the Month of June
by Jennifer Hornstein - 10/13/11
Interpol and other police organizations estimate that between 600,000 and 800,000 people—80 percent of them women and 50 percent minors—are taken by coercion or abduction each year for forced labor, sexual exploitation, illicit adoption, forced organ removal, recruitment as child soldiers, and other illegal purposes. Using DNA technology to reunite parents with children who have been abducted and recovered offers new hope for countless victims worldwide.
Spotlight on Haiti:
While human trafficking is a significant global problem, early 2010 brought a renewed sense of urgency to the need to reunite families when the devastating earthquake struck in Haiti. Life Technologies and DNA-Prokids recognized the need to use DNA in this situation and provided assistance.
The Life Technologies Foundation provided a grant in 2009–2010 to support DNA-Prokids, a nonprofit organization that uses DNA testing to deter the trafficking of children throughout the world, and to ultimately reunite parents with children by establishing the identity of a person who offers a child for adoption as the natural parent.
The Foundation provided DNA-Prokids with instruments and reagents through a grant process and technical resources. The program is providing support to the Haitian government to process more than 5,000 samples.