The Affero Blog
Mary and I just registered to join International Justice Mission for the Nashville Benefit Dinner later this month at the Nashville Convention Center. We are thankful for the host committee and sponsors pulling together for this event and are honored to be invited. IJM President and CEO, Gary Haugen, will be speaking at this swanky event and we’ll enjoy a live performance from Amy Grant, one of Mary’s all-time favorites.
As I’ve shared in a previous post, Gary and his team at International Justice Mission are champions of justice and hope. They serve as a human rights agency rescuing victims of slavery, sexual exploitation and other forms of violent oppression. IJM lawyers, investigators and aftercare professionals perform rescue missions and provide aftercare to victims. They courageously prosecute perpetrators and promote functioning public justice systems around the world.
What do you know about human trafficking? Did you know that every day a young woman is being tricked, a young child is lured, and a poor man is coerced from from their home or country and compelled to work with little or now payment. These people are being exploited. This trade is a modern day form of slavery. Some are forced into prostitution, others forced labor. Human trafficking is the fastest-growing criminal industry in the world. And it is big business with the total annual revenue for trafficking in persons estimated to be between $5 billion and $9 billion.
Our friends at The Home Foundation are dedicated to the ending human trafficking both domestically and abroad. Through advocacy, education and relief efforts, they work courageously to end the suffering of women and children sold into sexual slavery.
There are as many as 27 million slaves world-wide. 85% of those victims are women and children. The devastation from this evil is tremendous in far-off places like India and Eastern Europe – but also a growing problem in the United States. Organizations frequently offer rescue and restoration to victims internationally because the need is so tremendous in these high-risk areas. However, little is being done to address the need for shelters here in the U.S. In fact, in some instances exploited girls are being kept in jail until they can speak out against their perpetrator because there was no other safe place to keep them.
To learn more about the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000, you can read this Trafficking in Persons Report from the U.S. Department of State. At The Home Foundation’s website, you can learn about their collaborative effort with other shelters dedicated to the restoration of survivors of sex trafficking. This association helps set forth guidelines to ensure that victims receive quality care to heal and re-integrate into them into their communities as wholly functioning individuals engaged in life. Restored and free from their past.
Take a minute and think about this. Can you imagine the suffering and long term effects from the trauma and abuse you would experience as a woman or child trafficked? Funding through Affero helps The Home Foundation with their vision to establish an educational conference to assist those serving this unique population – giving them tools to further develop their programs in the cities and homes where they serve and give them opportunities to network with other professionals serving in this field. This work aims to bring together experts in the field to equip and develop workers dealing with human trafficking here in the U.S.
The issues victims of trafficking face are huge, including; post traumatic stress disorder, disassociative identity disorder, night terrors, detachment, eating disorders, cutting, sexual trauma and much more. This conference deals with these issues while offering practical help and advice on running shelters in the U.S.
Established shelters dedicated to the total restoration of an individual rescued from sexual slavery will have a huge impact on the face of modern day slavery and the abolitionist movement of the 21st Century. When victims become re-integrated into society they can speak out against perpetrators and affect change for other victims. This will help move us closer to achieving our ultimate goal: a day when slavery is truly eradicated.
With your help, we are developing this association and quality shelters across the U.S. Each home is dedicated to HOPE, OPPORTUNITY, MENTORING, EMPOWERMENT, & SPIRITUAL SUPPORT. Thank you for your prayers, for giving and sharing this great work with your friends.