National president runs for victims of human trafficking

Susan Dickson with HAGAR fundraising coordinator, Anna Button after completing the half marathon in Cambodia.

On a dark Cambodian morning in December 2019, Susan Dickson, National President of CWLANZ, and husband, Bruce, joined around 10,000 runners and walkers participating in the Angkor Watt Charity Half Marathon events. Susan and her husband Bruce both completed the half marathon.

They had spent several months raising awareness of human trafficking and exploitation both in NZ and overseas while fundraising for HAGAR. Hagar is a Melbourne based organisation that works primarily with victims of human trafficking and exploitation in Cambodia, but also in Vietnam and Afghanistan. This run was the culmination of their efforts. The HAGAR group, styled RUN for Freedom, included twenty other runners and walkers from NZ and a similar number from Australia.

Catholic Women’s League of Aotearoa New Zealand has in recent years worked to support WUCWO’s, (World Union of Catholic Women’s Organisations) call to fight against human trafficking and exploitation.

Pope Francis April 2019 said, Human trafficking is a “crime against humanity.” He went on to say, “in its multiple forms, it is a wound in the humanity of those who endure it and those who commit it.”

The trip organised by Anna Button the New Zealand Fundraising Co-ordinator for HAGAR New Zealand, was an ideal opportunity for the Dicksons to support a frontline organisation while fulfilling their passion for running around the world.

Susan and Bruce were privileged to spend time with some HAGAR Staff in both Phenom Penh and Sein Reap. These wonderful, dedicated women shared their stories and gave insights into the work they do as emergency foster parents to children who are uplifted from dangerous situations. They also meet adult survivors and were humbled by their stories of courage and resilience.

Susan and Bruce sincerely thank all those who sponsored them for their run and ask all to do what they can to support the fight against human trafficking and exploitation.

For more information both in NZ and overseas visit: