End It: Shine a Light On Slavery

#EndItMovement

Love is the light by which all are brought forward out of darkness. -LeeAnn Taylor

Today is Shine A Light On Slavery Day. It’s a day to join other Freedom Fighters from around the world to shine a light on modern-day slavery.

END IT is a Coalition of the leading organizations in the world in the fight for Freedom. With Coalition Partners engaged in work on the ground, together they bring AWARENESS, PREVENTION, RESCUE, and RESTORATION.

Learn More about Human Trafficking, Modern-Day Slavery, the Red “X” and the #EndItMovement. Share your #EndIt selfie on social media to join the collective voice and continue to raise awareness. Here’s your chance to get creative while linking arms with others to stand up for justice and freedom for the millions still oppressed and enslaved today.

Join me on Twitter @DestinysWomen

(c) By April McCallum, Destiny’s Women™ – “Championing the Life, Freedom & Destiny of Women”

 

 

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Modern-Day Abolitionist Thought Leaders Come Together

Modern-day abolitionist thought leaders will come together for a Google+ Hangout event this Friday, January 10th at 10 a.m. PST and, you are invited!  They will speak about issues surrounding modern-day slavery, share their collective insights, and challenge attendees to collaborate in the fight against modern-day slavery.

The event will be hosted by Nicholas Kristof and Half the Sky Movement. Speakers will include Gary Haugen (International Justice Mission), Dave Batstone (Not for Sale / Just Business), Rachel Lloyd (Girls Educational & Mentoring Services, GEMS), and Susan Bissell (UNICEF USA). They will be answering the question: What Does 2014 Hold for the Fight Against Modern-Day Slavery?

The modern-day slave trade is one of the fastest growing industries in the world, enslaving more than 30 million individuals today. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, “After drug dealing, trafficking of humans is tied with arms dealing as the second-largest criminal industry in the world.” Combating this $32 billion-dollar-a-year industry takes enormous effort as well as a large framework of diligent abolitionists. (via Not For Sale website)

January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month. What a great way to cross-connect with fellow freedom fighters, learn from leaders at the forefront of the movement, and invite friends to get involved! You can RSVP here: http://bit.ly/1cNChdw.

I hope you’ll join me there!

Join me on Twitter @DestinysWomen

(c) By April McCallum, Destiny’s Women™–”Championing the Life, Freedom & Destiny of Women”

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Disposable People: New Slavery in the Global Economy

In DISPOSABLE PEOPLE: New Slavery in the Global Economy, abolitionist and author Kevin Bales makes a clarion call for the ending of modern-day slavery around the world.

Slavery is theft — theft of a life, theft of work, theft of any property or produce, theft even of the children a slave might have borne. -Kevin Bales

This book is well researched and documented through the author’s personal experience going undercover to meet slaves and slaveholders. His investigation of slavery took him around the globe to Mauritania, Brazil, Thailand, Pakistan, and India.

Even with the resurgence of an abolitionist movement in modern times, the fact is, there are an estimated 27 million people living in slavery around the globe, yet many still escape our awareness or acknowledgement.  Why?

Bales argues that the increasing globalization of the economy–supply and demand–has fueled the “need” for coerced labor in the global supply chain, including forced child labor and debt bondage. What many readers will find interesting is his economic rationale for why slavery is not as profitable or sustainable as fair labor practices.

In what is referred to as the emergence of a “new slavery,” he asserts that modern-day slaves, unlike traditional forms of slavery, are not always considered a long-term investment. That means human beings lose their value. Many are viewed by slave masters as cheap, usable and sometimes (as in the case of sex slavery) reusable, “disposable” people.

Bales also illuminates the urgent need to raise individual and global social consciousness by connecting the dots from the slave to the end-user. He challenges our norms, by highlighting the necessity to re-think our purchase and consumption habits and preferences, and how supply and demand can directly affect slavery. The book challenges political, corporate *and* personal consumption mindsets and behaviors.

Kevin Bales

But he doesn’t just expose readers to this massive global problem and leave the research and case studies on the table. He offers readers strategic solutions. This book will open your eyes to the bigger picture and leave readers with a personal choice once they have been opened.

All of the author’s royalties from this book go to fund anti-slavery projects around the world.

 

 

Buy the Book Disposable People: New Slavery in the Global Economy.

Kevin Bales is co-founder of Free the Slaves.

Watch & Listen to Big Think Interviews with Kevin Bales.

Watch Ted Talks Video of Kevin Bales: How To Combat Modern Slavery.

As an author, a professor of sociology, and consultant to the United Nations Global Program on Human Trafficking, Kevin Bales is one of the world’s foremost experts on modern slavery. He has made it his mission to eradicate global slavery. Read More.

Join me on Twitter @DestinysWomen

(c) By April McCallum, Destiny’s Women™–”Championing the Life, Freedom & Destiny of Women”

 

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Baseball, Hotdogs & Human Trafficking?

What do Major League Baseball, Hotdogs and Human Trafficking have in common?

NOT FOR SALE nights at the ballpark in four major cities! Baseball fans and human rights advocates will have the opportunity to partner with players and the Not For Sale team against human trafficking and modern-day slavery.

Not For Sale is an organization led by president and co-founder Dave Batstone and executive director and co-founder Mark Wexler. The goal? To create a world where no one is for sale. Learn more about NFS and how it fights modern-day slavery around the world.

San Francisco Giant’s pitcher Jeremy Affeldt led the way as the first MLB athlete to join Team NFS. This year’s event will include advocate players who have stepped up to the plate against human trafficking including San Francisco Giants’ Jeremy Affeldt, Brandon Belt, Matt Cain, Hunter Pence and Barry Zito.  Adrian Gonzalez, Skip Schumaker, Shawn Tolleson and A.J. Ellis from the Los Angeles Dodgers. Plus, Nick Hundley, Brad Boxberger and Chase Headley from the San Diego Padres.  Click here for a full list of (Team NFS) MLB player advocates who have teamed up with NFS. 

Talk about putting your money where your mouth is, here are some examples of “power plays” to help combat modern-day slavery:

  • San Francisco Giants Jeremy Affeldt pledged $250 for every strikeout he throws to NFS for every season he plays to fuel Not For Sale’s global initiatives.
  • St Louis Cardinals Matt Holliday pledged $500 for every home run he hits each season he plays.
  • Los Angeles Dodgers Adrian Gonzales pledged to donate $100 for every hit he has this season.
  • Arizona Diamondbacks Ian Kennedy donates a portion for every inning he pitches.

“We’re trying to leave a legacy here that when we leave this game, we’re known for not only what we did on the field, but what we did outside the field.” –Jeremy Affeldt, San Francisco Giants

> Not For Sale nights with the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park, July 9

> Not For Sale nights with the San Diego Padres at Petco Park, July 14

> Not For Sale nights with the Minnesota Twins at Target Field, July 31

> Not For Sale nights with the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium, August 26

Major Leauge Baseball players and their fans have raised over $100,000 which helped fund a critical need for Not For Sale’s victim services.  Now, they want YOU to join them! More fan involvement means raising even greater awareness and more funds to help fight against modern-day slavery.  Everyone can do something! Blog, tweet, tell your friends, join with NFS to start a fundraising campaign in your area, use your creative talents, or donate online!

San Francisco Giant’s two-time World Series champion pitcher Jeremy Affeldt also released his first book, To Stir A Movement, which details his journey from childhood to pro ballplayer along with his relationship with Not For Sale and his heart for social justice.

Who’s your favorite MLB player or athlete? If they’re not already involved in the fight against modern-day slavery, use social media to reach out and challenge them to get in the game! 

Join me on Twitter @DestinysWomen

(c) By April McCallum, Destiny’s Women™ – “Championing the Life, Freedom & Destiny of Women”

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5 Ways To Fight For Freedom From Human Trafficking

Human Trafficking is the illegal trade of human beings, mainly for the purpose of commercial sexual exploitation and forced labor. As the world’s fastest growing criminal industry, it affects every nation across the globe. Every 30 seconds, someone is forced into this type of bondage–modern slavery. –The A21 Campaign

We’ve all heard the expression, “No one can do everything, but all of us can do something“. When it comes to issues like sex trafficking, forced labor, or any form of modern-day slavery, we freeze. Not because we don’t care, but because we feel so absolutely incapable of making any significant or effective contribution toward real change.

Where do we start? How do we start? Once we take the first step, what next? That’s when it helps to look to credible people and organizations who have already started paving a path, and join them on their journey. The A21 Campaign is one of those organizations. I agree with them when they say, “Not everyone can intern or volunteer, but everyone can make a difference.”

The A21 Campaign makes it simple for us by offering Five Ways To Fight For Freedom from human trafficking. One of my favorite pieces of advice is:

“Be yourself and channel your passions for a purpose. No one else has the exact talents and platform as you. Do what you love to help raise awareness or money.”

The A21 Campaign exists to abolish injustice in the 21st century through prevention, protection, prosecution, and partnerships. Want more ideas on how you can get involved as a modern-day abolitionist? Check out the full list here. Learn more about A21 Campaign’s mission.

It is estimated that the average age of human trafficking victims is only 12 years old. The majority of modern-day slaves are believed to be women and girls. According to A21, only 1-2% of victims are ever rescued. Share the Five Ways To Fight For Freedom with your friends… numbers matter!

Tell us how you are channeling your passions for a purpose and joining your efforts with other freedom fighters on the road to end slavery!

Contact The A21 Campaign or Follow on Twitter

Join me on Twitter @DestinysWomen

(c) By April McCallum, Destiny’s Women™ – “Championing the Life, Freedom & Destiny of Women”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Made In A Free World

Made In A Free World is using social media to stir up awareness that will lead to action. The Topic? Modern-day Slavery and Human Trafficking.

So, here’s the challenge. Create a board on Pinterest that answers the question: “What does a Free World mean or look like to you?” The most creative pinner (as decided by the judges) will win one Change for Good box filled with awesome Fair Trade products from Trade As One. Pin to Win!

Follow These Easy Steps:

  • FOLLOW Made In A Free World on Pinterest
  • CREATE a Pinterest board and title it: “Made In A Free World”
  • FILL your board with at least 10 pins and a minimum of 2 pins must be repinned from the first 5 boards on the MIAFW page
  • TAG all of the pins on your board with the hashtag #MadeInAFreeWorld 
  • COMMENT on Made In A Free World’s contest pin with a URL to your board when you’re done

Once all of the boards are submitted, the panel of judges will pick a winner based on originality, creativity, adherence to the rules, and demonstration of FREE spirit. The contest ends Tuesday, April 30th.

This is an easy way to use a little creativity through words and pictures to be a voice for the voiceless. Every impression that causes someone to pause, consider, and take action, matters. Slaves cannot free themselves, that’s why we can’t be silent. We, the free, are their only hope. I invite you to join me in getting involved, and don’t forget to tell a friend.

Let’s get slavery out of our system!

Learn More:

Embracing a Free World: Do You Know Your Slavery Footprint?

Visit Made In a Free World online and follow on Twitter @madeinafreewrld

Visit Slavery Footprint online at: www.slaveryfootprint.org

Join me on Twitter @DestinysWomen

(c) By April McCallum, Destiny’s Women™ – “Championing the Life, Freedom & Destiny of Women”

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Human Beings as Commodities

Human trafficking is the fastest growing global crime, second in size only to the illegal arms trade. It involves the movement of people through violence, deception, or coercion for various purposes, among them sex, forced labor, and even body parts. The book, Stop the Traffik speaks to the issues of organized immigration as a crime (aka trafficking in persons or human trafficking) and the exploitation and violence that victims are subject to.

“Criminals take advantage of the fact that human beings are the world’s most precious ‘commodity’. Let’s finish what Wilberforce started. We can stop the traffick. And we MUST.'” –Daniel Bedingfield

Learn More: Visit Stop The Traffik’s Website

Buy the Book: Stop the Traffik: People Shouldn’t Be Bought & Sold

Learn About: Abolitionist William Wilberforce

“You may choose to look the other way but you can never say again that you did not know.” -William Wilberforce 

Join me on Twitter @DestinysWomen

(c) By April McCallum, Destiny’s Women™ – “Championing the Life, Freedom & Destiny of Women”

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Exchanging One Misery For Another

 

“Women and girls may themselves take the initiative to migrate in the hope of earning a decent income, escaping a miserable life, or supporting a family back home. In such cases, they are sometimes aware that they are going to work in commercial sex, considering this to be an acceptable short-term remedy to a desperate need to earn a living. They very rarely, however, are aware of the nature of the demands that will be made upon them, the conditions in which they are likely to be held, or the possible long-term repercussions of the activity.” International Labor Organization (ILO)

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NOT TODAY Movie: Child Trafficking in India

NOT TODAY opens in theatres today. It is a movie about child trafficking and exploitation.  One of its many awards includes “Best Justice Film” from the 2013 Justice Film Festival. As many are now aware, “human trafficking” is the new terminology for modern-day slavery. In any form, slavery condones the buying and selling of human beings. This is a film about India, but it’s also a film about humanity everywhere.

With the financial freedom to travel abroad, the young Caden Welles takes off for an adventure with his friends to Hyderabad, India. What he finds there is not a dream vacation, but a nightmare. Like so many of us who are exposed to the realities of human degradation through culturally embedded caste systems, sexual exploitation, forced labor, and/or child trafficking, he is forever haunted, forever changed.

NOT TODAY is a contemporary coming-of-age story, and through this journey, viewers are afforded terrifying, yet all-too-common examples of modern-day slavery, lined with lessons in courage, understanding, and faith, all wrapped in a rich cinematographic masterpiece.” Dr. Ana Steele, President Dalit Freedom Network USA

Watch the Trailer of NOT TODAY the Movie  

Executive Director, Matthew Cork says, “Dalits are not considered human. They get no education. They are used and abused and have no recourse or avenues toward justice. There is no protection from law enforcement; no access to the courts; no political voice, no hope of upward mobility.”

I know we live in a frenetic fast-paced world that thrives on sound bites and is always pushing toward the next thing, but if you would, re-read that last paragraph. Imagine it was referring to you, or the people you love. 

Cork is asked: “Can one movie change everything in India?” “No. But what if that one movie could open the eyes of millions and challenge them to join in this meaningful fight? There is a longing in the human heart for freedom. It is a universal longing.”

All of NOT TODAY’s partners are currently working to bring awareness, justice, and freedom to enslaved people around the globe.  Partners include A21 Campaign, International Justice Mission, Abolition International, and more. 

My challenge to you: Let’s work together, through the power of one, to begin to change each “no” into a “yes”. Yes, we believe in justice, equal justice for all of humanity. That includes fair laws, access to the courts, and legal protection for every person. Yes, we believe in education, the hope of upward mobility, and freedom from abuse for all. Yes, we believe girls have a right to live, receive education, and to prosper. Yes, we believe in a future hope that is good, the right to our voice, and freedom for all human beings, period.

As the movie byline reads: “None of us are free if one of us is enslaved.”

You may also be interested in:

Dalit Freedom Network: Touching the Untouchable Women of India

Untouchable — National Geographic Magazine  

Visit the website of NOT TODAY: The Movie or Follow on Twitter @NotTodayMovie.

How a Movie Ticket Can Help Save a Child From Slavery by Actor John Schneider

The movie was produced by Friends Church Yorba Linda, a congregation committed to educating the Dalits and ending human trafficking in India. Want to bring Not Today to YOUR City? Bring It!

Join me on Twitter @DestinysWomen

(c) By April McCallum, Destiny’s Women™ – “Championing the Life, Freedom & Destiny of Women”

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10 Organizations Fighting Human Trafficking & How You Can Get Involved

When evil presides in a society and we as the individuals who make up that society choose to look away and do nothing, we become part of the problem.  

As with any of life’s insurmountable issues, we cannot possibly solve them as individuals. But by choosing to say “yes” and to get involved, our collective efforts take on power. Every set of hands and every set of feet strengthen a cause. Every heart (life) set on rescue, restoration, and the promotion of healing and hope for those who have been devalued and oppressed, has great value. 

Today, January 11th, is Human Trafficking Awareness Day, and this month has been flagged for us to remember, seek out, and serve those hidden in darkness.

“This month, we rededicate ourselves to stopping one of the greatest human rights abuses of our time. Around the world, millions of men, women, and children are bought, sold, beaten, and abused, locked in compelled service and hidden in darkness.” –President Barack Obama Read the full Presidential Proclamation on National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, 2013 

I’ve listed 10 organizations below that are committed to fight Human Slavery and Sex Trafficking.  Take time to read the personal stories of survivors and inspirational rescues on their websites, but don’t stop with the stories. Choose to become part of the bigger story by getting involved.

Remember, it’s not just about fighting against “the bad guys,” but being for those who desperately need rescue. It’s literally about setting captives free, rescuing women and children from lives of torment, abuse, and shame.  It’s about helping people out of slavery and into their freedom.  It’s about giving a woman or child her dreams, destiny… her life back. Choose just one thing you will do to personally combat human trafficking this year.

International Justice Mission – A human rights agency that brings rescue to victims of slavery, sexual exploitation and other forms of violent oppression. Get Involved

Polaris Project – An organization committed to combating human trafficking and modern-day slavery, and to strengthening the anti-trafficking movement through a comprehensive approach. Get Involved

Not For Sale Campaign – Creates tools that engage business, government and grassroots in order to incubate and grow social enterprises to benefit enslaved and vulnerable communities. Get Involved

GEMS Girls – Girls Educational & Mentoring Services serves girls and young women who have experienced commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking. Get Involved

Somaly Mam Foundation – Mission is to give victims and survivors a voice in their lives, liberate victims, end slavery, and empower survivors as they create and sustain lives of dignity. Get Involved

ECPAT – Mission is to End Child Prostitution And Trafficking of children for sexual purposes. (U.S.) Get Involved or (Int’l) Get Involved

A21 Campaign – is comprised of individuals, organizations, and government officials committed to one goal: to abolish slavery in the 21st century. Get Involved

Love146 – Committed to he abolition of child trafficking and exploitation. Nothing less. Get Involved

Hagar International – Dedicated to recovery of extreme human rights abuses, particularly human trafficking, gender-based violence, and sexual exploitation. Get Involved

Innocents at Risk – Dedicated to protecting children from all forms of abuse, and work to end child exploitation and child trafficking everywhere. Get Involved

If I can encourage you in any way, it is to say, don’t imagine your small efforts as not enough to make an impact. Imagine your small efforts linked with millions of others who are combining their small efforts with yours, and because of that collaboration, changing the course of countless lives across this planet together.  Think about it this way, because you choose not to look away, someone will find their freedom.

Let us know how you are making a difference in the fight against Human Trafficking… Abolition!

Photo Credit: pixi_bebe/Flickr

Join me on Twitter @DestinysWomen

(c) By April McCallum, Destiny’s Women™ – “Championing the Life, Freedom & Destiny of Women”

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