Though few girls traveled alone, most were unaccompanied, traveling without relatives. Several girls said they traveled with adults that they did not know; at least two traveled with smugglers on trips paid for by their parents. This was the case of Patricia, 22, from the DRC. Her parents paid a woman from her community, introduced to her as her ‘auntie,’ to bring her along on a journey to Morocco. She provided protection during the trip but made her work (trading goods) to make money and separated from her upon reaching Morocco: “The auntie told me that she was now going to leave me and that I would have to find my own way. She was just here to accompany me to Morocco.”
Others followed a contact that they knew in their neighborhood, such as another person who was also planning to migrate.
Ini, 19, who traveled alone from Nigeria to Italy, on a trip paid for by her father, said that she followed a lead and was directed by three to four different people on her trip through Niger and Libya.
Collecting information about smugglers is a method that some girls use to mitigate risks and be better informed about the challenges they might face during their journey. Girls reported that their choice of smugglers might change at the last minute due to the reputation of the smugglers.
from: “Girls on the move in North Africa” (SAVE THE CHILDREN)