Susana Tarimaco’s story is an inspiration to millions of mothers around the world. Her tell of bravery motivates others to take up similiar courageous endeavours.
A high profile case where a 57 year old mother has been searching her young daughter Marita de los Angeles Veron for the last 10 years and has even undertaken country wide public awareness campaign against sex traffickers and brothel owners who abducted and forced teenagers and young women into prostitution.
Susana Tarimaco, a resident of Tucuman in Argentina fanatically searched for her daughter Marita a mother of three year old daughter did not return home while visiting a nearby doctor on April 13,2002. Informed from various sources including eye witnesses that their daughter might be sold to brothel in La Rioja, a small town, she and her husband Daniel insisted police to take action against brothel owners. Initially reluctant, police raided a bar in La Rioja but Marita was not found. Not deterred by the outcome, Susana visited every bar and brothel across the country posing as a prostitute to find her missing daughter.
She has even sacrificed her personal life also. Her husband Daniel separated from her, fed up with her obsession to find Marita. Police even discouraged her to visit La Rioja as Marita was last located there. Subsequently, media got interested into the matter and took her interviews. Media pressure compelled police to step up raids on bars and brothels. During raids several girls were rescued. Bar owners and sex traffickers even tried to eliminate her on several occasions. After such incidents police protection was arranged for Susana. Meanwhile, anti sex trafficking rallies were organized in the town of La Rioja on regular basis.
In 2007, Susana was awarded an International Women of Courage Award for her initiative to curb sex trafficking. Though her daughter has not been found, despite massive search, she set up a foundation in Marita’s name to rescue and help victims of sex trafficking and lobbying country’s lawmakers to pass a law that would treat human trafficking a Federal (Center) subject and safeguard the future of victims.
Due to Trimarco’s hard work to find her daughter, human trafficking has gained public and government attention in Argentina and government is taking some stringent measures survivors to curb human trafficking.
But for her, courage means Strength, braveness and commitment.