Born to a destitute family, young Sanju was sent to work in a rug factory in Kathmandu, Nepal. Like tens of thousands of other “carpet kids” throughout South Asia, Sanju was exploited for her tiny, nimble fingers that were considered ideal for the intricate motions required for weaving. And like most child laborers around the world, Sanju received no compensation for her toil—she was a virtual slave. She went to sleep each night, wondering if tomorrow would ever be different. That day came when a GoodWeave inspector found her and brought her to Hamro Ghar (“our home”), a rehabilitation center in Kathmandu.

Today, Sanju is experiencing many firsts—from school to sports and she has grown to be a mentor to the other young girls.