Human trafficking won’t disappear on its own; it will take commitment and concern from people the world over to really make a dent. It’s especially important that young people engage with the cause. Twenty-one-year-old Finali Galaiya is both a contestant in this weekend’s inaugural Miss Attitude East Africa 2016 beauty pageant and a passionate believer in the fight to end human trafficking. Finali is hoping to use her position to help raise the profile of the anti-human trafficking campaign and the work that organisations like HAART are doing. Find out a little more about this budding actor, model and chartered accountant and give her your support so we can collectively shine an even brighter spotlight on human trafficking.
Tell us a bit about your background?
Born in Kenya; Indian by ethnicity; British by curriculum; and International by choice. I am a global citizen! It is my mission to help change the lives of those in need.
What currently occupies most of your time?
I am a chartered accountant in the making, I act in television adverts and runway shows, as well as doing voice overs – that makes me the complete package of an actor, model and voice over artist. Guys, this beauty has brains! But that’s not all… By joining hands with HAART and other organisations I am focused on giving back to the world. Saving just one person means the world to me since their world has been snatched away and they have been deprived of their basic human rights.
How did you become interested in human trafficking?
I think I have always been interested in human trafficking. I was very fond of the African-American slave abolitionist Harriet Tubman when we learned about her back in school. It was inspiring how she, a slave herself, helped several others to gain freedom! However, one incident – perhaps the incident that changed my life – is when I met someone caught in the web of human trafficking. A girl, about my age… I was very young back then, still in school, and I couldn’t help her. But today life has given me the opportunity to help others like her and I am not going to take this for granted!
Why is human trafficking such an important cause for you and for the world?
A lot of people think of human trafficking as a thing of the past, but it clearly isn’t! It’s one of the fastest growing criminal networks and it’s a shame how most people ignore it. Many people are just ignorant while others think it’s none of their business. But people need to make human trafficking their business. Speak about it! Create awareness. If you can’t do something about it, let us know, let the government and other organisations know! But do not sit back, helplessly thinking: ‘What can I do?’.
What would you like to see happen in relation to human trafficking in the world?
I would like to see more support from the general public, from people like me and you! But also more government support and initiatives, especially when it comes to rescue operations. I wish the people behind these disgusting human trafficking chains would realise that people’s lives are not for sale or use! We need to look at others as human beings and not things.
If you win the Miss Attitude East Africa 2016 Pageant, what would you like to use your status to achieve?
Winning Miss Attitude would mean I would have a platform through which I would be able to create awareness about human trafficking. I would love to be able to inspire people to take initiative and do something about this issue!
Okay, tell us some fun things about you. What is your favourite food?
I am a vegetarian. I love food, all types of food, be it Indian, Chinese, English, Italian. While I’m in love with eating, I love chocolate the most! I have a sweet tooth and splurge on chocolates and ice cream all the time – I think I have a very childlike quality when it comes to food!
What’s your favourite ice cream flavour?
Chocolate, I love dark chocolate ice cream! It’s bitter and it’s sweet at the same time – that makes it perfect! Besides which, they say dark chocolate is healthy…
What is your favourite animal?
I love the elephant and the panda. I think I am very similar to both…I believe every animal should be loved and treated properly (that includes humans!).
Update: Finali has since this article won both the Miss Attitude East Africa 2016 and the Miss India Worldwide Kenya 2016!