Image by Ryan Holloway
January is the official month for Human Trafficking Awareness. In 2019, we have the tools to gain knowledge within seconds, passenger self-driven cars, take flight over oceans, practically live and breathe digitally, and shrug at how effortless global connectivity is. In 2019, we also have 40 million sex, labor and organ slaves that span the entire world. In one whole day, we could operate completely encompassed by futuristic technology, while coexisting with inhumane and outdated back alley offense on human dignity. It begs the question: if we are so smart and so modern, how does this cruelty remain in existence? Perhaps the more intelligence we gain is subjective, but one thing is for sure, none of that can eradicate the ugliest of ugly that can stain the human spirit and plague an entire people group. One might also ask: Where does evil come from? Perhaps knowing the origin could guide us to the solution.
However heinous, J.R.R Tolkien was onto something when he said, “There is some good in this world, and it's worth fighting for.” It’s interesting how within even the darkest corners of the earth a light can shine through, and when it does, at our core, we feel the power and want to fuel it. The following featured list is of 10 unique organizations throughout the world that stand on the shoulders of power, strength and relentlessness in order to create a day and age without Human Trafficking. While we should lend our attention to these individuals everyday, January is for them and the beautiful people they are seeking freedom for.
Polaris is a leader in the global fight to eradicate modern slavery. Named after the North Star that guided slaves to freedom in the U.S., Polaris systemically disrupts a $150 billion industry--the human trafficking networks that rob human beings of their lives and their freedom. Their comprehensive model puts victims at the center of what they do – helping survivors restore their freedom, preventing more victims, and leveraging data and technology to pursue traffickers wherever they operate.
They also provide the NATIONAL HUMAN TRAFFICKING HOTLINE
To get help, report a tip about a potential case of human trafficking, find service referrals for victims of trafficking, or request training or technical assistance, contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline by calling 1-888-373-7888 (TTY:711), by texting "BeFree" (233733), via live chat or email. Services are available toll-free 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
A21 is a global organization founded in Australia. Their goal is to abolish slavery everywhere, forever through the following solutions:
REACH - Reduce vulnerability. Prevent slavery from ever happening by engaging people through events, student presentations, and education programs.
RESCUE - Identifying victims. Work closely with law enforcement on the ground to support police operations, identify victims through our hotlines, assist in the prosecution of traffickers, represent survivors in court proceedings, and collaborate with governments and other NGOs to eradicate slavery at every level.
RESTORE - Empower Survivors. Work face-to-face with every person in our care based on their individual needs, providing them with access to housing, medical treatment, counseling, education, employment, and repatriation to help them reach a place of independence.
FREE THE SLAVES https://www.freetheslaves.net/
Their mission is to Liberate slaves and change the conditions that allows slavery to persist through the reduction of regional vulnerability, by assisting those in slavery to freedom, and transforming the political, economic, cultural, and social circumstances that make slavery possible. They rescue those in slavery and help them rejoin their families and communities. Since the organization’s founding in 2000:
13,000 + people freed from slavery
450,000 + people in trafficking hot spots reached through awareness raising and rights education to prevent their enslavement
200+ traffickers arrested
Check out their stories here.
The Blue Blindfold campaign and logo was launched in December 2007 by the UK Human Trafficking Centre (UKHTC). The concept of the Blue Blindfold is 'Don't Close Your Eyes' to Human Trafficking. The Blue Blindfold represents the risk of people having their eyes closed and not being aware of the crime that may be going on around them. The logo has become an internationally recognized symbol of help for victims.
The international campaign is designed to:
Encourage police authorities, front line professionals and the public to open their eyes to human trafficking
Raise awareness, provide training and encourage information sharing worldwide
Support victims of human trafficking.
The Blue Blindfold Campaign based is always looking to support national or community based groups who wish to get involved. Learn more here.
Connect Blue Blindfold
The Human Trafficking Institute exists to decimate modern slavery at its source by empowering police and prosecutors to stop traffickers. Working inside criminal justice systems, the Institute provides the embedded experts, world-class training, investigative resources, and evidence-based research necessary to free victims. Their proven strategy includes the following:
The Institute will set up Specialized Human Trafficking Units, and fast track courts to hear the cases. That means we don’t have to reform the entire criminal justice system. We just need a small part of the system to start enforcing the anti-human trafficking laws.
We will then take the Specialized Units through an Academy where they will learn how to identify more cases, use trauma-informed interviewing techniques, and develop successful trial strategies.
Former FBI agents or prosecutors, who have worked human trafficking cases, will office with the Specialized Units and work with them, day in and day out, on their cases to stop traffickers and rescue victims.
Research & Scholarship
The Institute provides specialized units and policy makers the evidence-based resources necessary to succeed. Updates on best practices, legal research, and multi-disciplinary scholarship will guide practical casework and future funding decisions.
CARE (Christian Action Research and Education) is a Christian charity seeking to uphold human dignity and to support the most vulnerable people in society, engaging with politicians in the UK Parliaments & Assemblies and promoting Christian community-based initiatives.
They accomplish this through the following:
Providing clear information about important current social and moral concerns about public policy, education and the community.
Encouraging informed prayer for issues throughout society
Helping people to recognise the dignity and worth of every individual - from fertilisation to life’s natural end.
Inspiring and helping Christians to be actively involved in the democratic process, where there is great need for truth and justice.
Continuing to develop the post-graduate CARE Leadership Programme
Promoting community-based initiatives that live out Christ’s love and truth.
Destiny Rescue is committed to liberating the enslaved and restoring those who have been abused. Their organization currently serves in Thailand, Cambodia, India, The Dominican Republic and the Philippines and plans to expand their reach to serve even more children.
Since 2011, they’ve rescued over 2000 children enslaved around the world, helped keep hundreds more from entering the sex trade through their various prevention programs, ensured justice for those who have been wronged, and raised awareness to untold numbers.
Connect with Destiny Rescue | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
Digital Defenders of Children, Thorn is a non-profit that partners with NGOs, law enforcement, volunteers and leverages technology to save children from sexual abuse and trafficking. The charity builds powerful platforms that includes technology, resources and awareness campaigns. Thorn calls to action everyone, not just law enforcement and tech companies, but volunteers, NGO’s and more to get involved. They work to identify victims, deter abusers and disrupt platforms where child sexual exploitation takes place. You can read more on the impact they’ve made from 2015-2017 here.
Hagar, an Australian based organization, works to end the cycle of trafficking, slavery and abuse that exploits women and children in Afghanistan, Cambodia and Vietnam.
They help survivors heal, recover and thrive by helping them to secure safe accommodation, access counseling, get legal support, complete their education and find suitable employment.
They help communities create change by providing training and awareness to help stop trafficking, slavery and abuse of women and children.
They advocate for Australia to be a leader in the movement to end to human trafficking, slavery and abuse and believe governments, companies, civil society and citizens all have an important role to play
You can read their entire strategic plan here You can read our full Strategic Plan here.
Love146 works to end child trafficking and exploitation through survivor care and prevention. The organization began in 2002, building and expanding safe homes in Asia and training grassroots aftercare workers with knowledge in best practices and equipping them with practical tools to be even more effective. In 2008, they opened their Round Home for girls in the Philippines, and since then have added three more additional survivor care locations, serving both boys and girls in the Philippines, the U.S. and the U.K. Their aftercare programs provide the following:
Facilitates hopes and restoration to each child that enters the home
Several play areas
Each home is built specifically for survivors to experience reflection, a sense of peace, freedom, dignity and self-esteem, as well as playfulness so that children can simply be children again. Learn more here.
Comprising representatives from 61 different Christian Religious organizations, from 30 European countries, RENATE is a network which collectively works in the areas of Awareness-raising, Advocacy, Campaigning and Education in order to prevent Human Trafficking in the first instance.
RENATE members work at grassroots levels, supporting victims & survivors as they transition to life free from fear and abuse. In this regard, RENATE works with both local government departments & NGOs to provide shelters, counseling, trauma therapies, life skills training and ongoing support.
Connect with RENATE | Facebook | YouTube
During this month and every day, we hope you will spend some time thinking about the many victims of human trafficking, as well as the modern day abolitionists actively pursuing freedom for them. If there is an organization that you would like to be recognized, email us firstname.lastname@example.org. Please share this article in response to Human Trafficking Awareness month!