There is no question that human trafficking has been a recurring headline in recent years as people become more aware of the scope and magnitude of this industry, both domestically and abroad. When we face statistics such as 21 million lives held in captivity and a $32 billion industry that is thriving, our common response is to feel numb and helpless.
One local organization, Freedom’s Promise, is challenging us to recognize that we aren’t helpless by inviting us to join in the fight against child
exploitation and trafficking. While the numbers can be overwhelming, the truth is they represent individual lives that can be impacted greatly.
When the organization’s founder, Amber Barron, first learned about the issue, she knew she was being called to step into the fight. With Cambodia known as a place where children are particularly vulnerable to traffickers, it was identified as the starting place. Through several vision-casting and due diligence trips, it became evident that many were working on the rescue and rehabilitation side, but few were addressing the root causes of trafficking, one of which is a lack of education.
From there Freedom’s Promise became dedicated to the prevention of human trafficking and child exploitation through individualized community development programs in Cambodia and stateside awareness events. With education one of five core components, Freedom’s Promise has placed at-risk children in schools to decrease their vulnerability – once again proving the power of education.
There are many local opportunities to support Freedom’s Promise and get involved. Click here to sign up for their newsletter or email contact at freedomspromise dot org for more information.
One volunteer reflecting on her trip to Cambodia beautifully summarized the situation and our call to action: “The Cambodians had so much long ago, but it was taken away. They are now rebuilding their lives in the present, and the future for years to come. And that is where were come in. Not to save them but to stand alongside them.”