These are two words that should never be in the same sentence together, but yet it’s a $150 billion dollar industry with more than 40 million people still in slavery.
According to A21, only 1% are ever rescued.
The first time I heard of human trafficking was in 2011 right after I graduated college. A friend and I had rented the movie, The Whistleblower from a Redbox.
I watched the movie in horror, but what shocked me didn’t come until the end.
The end credits began with, “Based on a True Story” and proceeded to give updates on Kathryn Bolkovac, the Nebraska cop who served as a peacekeeper in post-war Bosnia and outed the U.N. for covering up a sex trafficking scandal.
I couldn’t believe this actually happened! Once I became aware of the issue, I knew I wanted to help.
While living in New York City, I attended Hillsong Church. One of the pastors, Christine Caine founded a nonprofit focused on ending human trafficking. That organization is A21. I participated in the NYC A21 Walk for Freedom walking the streets of Manhattan with black tape covering my mouth. What an incredible experience to witness hundreds of New Yorkers looking at you funny and then reading the signs we were carrying with facts about human trafficking.
Do you remember Ashton Kutcher’s emotional speech where he testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, providing his recommendations to end trafficking? Kutcher co-founded an organization called Thorn dedicated to creating tools to defend children from sexual abuse. I was fortunate to attend Thorn’s Hackathon where volunteers came together to brainstorm ways to prevent sex trafficking.
In honor of Human Trafficking Month, I wanted to share a few of the amazing organizations I’ve supported and worked with over the years working tirelessly to end trafficking. #EndHumanTrafficking
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