Human Trafficking Awareness Day

Today is Human Trafficking Awareness Day here in the U.S. Human Trafficking is a modern day form of slavery and illegal. As I was driving Lucas to occupational therapy this morning I heard human trafficking statistics that sickened me.

The United Nations estimates that 700,000 to 4 million women and children are trafficked around the world for purposes of forced prostitution, labor and other forms of exploitation every year.

Think it doesn’t happen here in the U.S?

50,000 women and children are trafficked into the United States from no less than 49 countries every year. As many as 750,000 women and children have been trafficked into the United States over the last decade.

I didn’t realize that Human Trafficking was so widespread and affected so many women and children! It really upsets me to think about all those women and children who are forced to live like this.

What you can do:

*Pray for people in these situations

*$2 provides emergency supplies to a survivor

*Report a tip if you believe someone to be involved in human trafficking

*Buy Fair Trade products and support companies who pay their workers fairly and give them good working conditions

*Share information on human trafficking with your friends

*Participate in the Human Trafficking photo campaign

*Host a fundraiser to raise money for a local anti-human trafficking charity

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What will YOU do to help stop human trafficking?

Don’t Turn Away

Below is a guest post from Kristi Stephens about the upcoming series on her blog.

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I have an odd defense mechanism with things that make me uncomfortable – I go to sleep!

When on long car trips through the mountains with no exits in sight, or stuck in a traffic jam in a tunnel, and we start to run low on gas, I lean my seat back and sleep (when NP is driving, of course!) I figure that if we are going to run out of gas, it will happen whether I am awake and anxious or asleep and blissfully unaware – most likely we’ll be fine, so I might as well avoid the stress and sleep!

There are a lot of horrifying and evil things in this world that I would rather not think about. I find myself metaphorically sleeping in my seat to avoid anxiety.

Human trafficking is one of those issues I would rather not think about.

Chew on these stats – read them out loud if it will help them sink in.

  • 100,000 girls, ages 9-19, are trafficked in commercial sexual exploitation in the U.S.
  • 3,000 children are forced into commercial sexual exploitation at any given time, just in San Francisco.

  • 1.2 million children are trafficked internationally each year
  • As many as 4 million women and girls are bought and sold worldwide every year.

Horrifying.

I’m guessing most of us are like me – we’d rather close our eyes, stay blissfully unaware. We figure it’s going to happen whether we know about it or not, so we might as well ignore it.

It’s time to wake up, friends. There are things we can do.

The more I learn about human trafficking, the more it vividly illustrates for me my state as a former slave, redeemed from the bondage of sin. Christ paid the price with His own blood to redeem my life from the pit – the least I can do in return is to tell others about the freedom available through my Savior. And as a former slave, redeemed by a God who loves justice and mercy, I feel compelled to do all I can to secure freedom for the millions of physical slaves in this sin-marred world.

I humbly ask you to join me on this journey. For the next two weeks- the weeks before we commemorate the blood-price paid for our freedom – it is my honor to host Gillian Ferdwerda from Women at Risk, International here on KristiStephens.com. Gillian will be sharing amazing stories, horrifying statistics… and hope. Women at Risk, also known as WAR, is on the front lines – helping to find, rescue, love women and children who have been sold, abused, betrayed, forgotten. There are so many ways we can help.

So please be sure to read this amazing series. Visit Women at Risk, International’s website. Learn all you can about trafficking. Tell your friends. Post links on facebook, twitter, or your blog. Please help spread the word – wake us from our slumber.

If you are a blogger and would like to help, please grab this button for your blog – the more who hear, the better.

BWS tips button

Code: <a href=”http://www.krististephens.com/redeemed”><img src=”http://www.krististephens.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/WAR-page.jpg” alt=”BWS tips button” width=”150″ height=”125″></a>

Let’s proclaim freedom for the captives in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.