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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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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Trafficked and Re-Trafficked

Children trafficked into one form of labor may later be sold into another, as with girls from rural Nepal, who are recruited to work in carpet factories but are then trafficked into the sex industry over the border into India. -ILO/IPEC, Helping Hands or Shackled Lives? Understanding Child Domestic Labour and Responses to It

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Recipe for Trafficking

 

“Take one desperate woman, ripe for exploiting. Remove her opportunities. Soak her in poverty for a lifetime. Throw in a fistful of organized crime.

Mix her up. Turn her out, and there you have it.

One woman, pummelled, panicked. One woman, freshly trafficked.”

Stop the Traffik

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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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300,000 Children at Risk of Being Sold for Sex Every Year

 

The Department of Justice states that as many as 300,000 children are at risk for sexual exploitation each year in the United States.

It’s a staggering statistic. The reality of hundreds of thousands of innocent children hidden in the shadows only to be bought, sold, used, and abused for profit and pleasure, every year is unconscionable. It also means they are in desperate need of our voice!

Founder and executive director of Rebecca Project for Human Rights, Malika Saada Saar says, “Americans are right to get angry at the violence against women and girls in developing nations: the Congo rape camps, the widespread practices of female genital mutilation in West Africa and the infanticide of females in China.

Our digust at the violence committed against women and girls is heightened by the culture of impunity that allows the perpetrators of these crimes to go free without condemnation or punishment. That culture also turns victims into criminals, such as the girls in Thailand who are beaten and raped and then ostracized by their families and society.

But our indignation must be turned inward, too. Here in the United States, there is a similar culture of impunity when young American girls are sold for sex. There are 100,000 to 300,000 children between 11 and 14 who are vulnerable to being sold for sex by pimp-captors every year in the United States, according to government statistics.” Read the Full Article: U.S. Should Stop Criminalizing Sex Trafficking Victims.

The Rebecca Project for Human Rights advocates for justice, dignity and policy reform for vulnerable women and girls in the United States and in Africa. You can find them online at rebeccaproject.org and on Twitter @rebeccaproject.

Now that you are aware, help spread the word, and if you see something, say something!

The National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) is a national, toll-free hotline, available to answer calls and texts from anywhere in the country, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every day of the year. Phone 1-888-373-7888 or Text text BeFree (233733) Visit Polaris Project to learn more about Human Trafficking.

Source: U.S. Dept of Justice: OJP Fact Sheet–HumanTrafficking

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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International Women’s Day 2013: You’ve Come a Long Way Baby… But We’re Not Done Yet!

 

International Women’s Day is a global celebration of women past, present and future and their achievements.

As we read through history, and hear current accounts of the advancement of women’s rights, there is much cause to celebrate. Not because women want to be men, or because women feel the need to be superior to men. But because women being granted equal rights to treatement and access allows them to be treated equally as human beings.

So much has been said about the “War on Women”. In my view, the war on women includes anything that seeks to inhibit, destroy, demean, or deny a girl or woman her rightful place in existence. Not just at a certain point in history, or within her particular culture, but something even bigger than that. The war on women means the things that try to mess with her destiny to dream, be free, be valued, and to live her life fully. It’s about her purpose, her passions, and her very existence as a living breathing human being–one that will, if allowed, leave her unique impression in the world.

So blatant are these opponents, that they still dare to rear their ugly heads even in this so-called “modern civilization” of humanity. An old marketing slogan said, “You’ve come a long way baby!” But undeniably, there is still a long way left to go. That is why we continue to raise our voices, and to lead, not to be led. Let us think with our minds, feel with our hearts, for ourselves, and not be coerced into deception. As Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” Things are constantly evolving, we must commit to being vigilant about the things that matter most. Walt Whitman said, “Either define the moment or the moment will define you.” In the same way, as fellow sojourners, we either choose to define ideologies, attitudes, and behaviors in our world based on immutable truth or, something else will define them for us.   

It is for the modern-day war on women. It is for those trapped in sex trafficking, and child pornography, and the corrupt hearts and systems of a broken world that perpetuate their enslavement. It is for the child brides, and those women who still today, are required to cover their faces as they walk the planet. It is because of dowry murders, using rape as a weapon of war, and all violent crimes against women. It is for the girls and women who are denied a proper education, property rights, medical care, or even a place at the proverbial table to simply let their voice be heard.

It is for the women who would have been, but whose voices were snuffed out before they could take their first breath–those counted as “nothing” through the assault of female gendercide and infanticide. For those baby girls who were denied their right to live just because of their gender, and for their mothers whose hearts are ripped from them, along with the daughters from their very hands and wombs.

So, today, I stand with so many other women (and men) around the globe who are grateful for the hard-fought accomplishments on behalf of women’s human rights.  And in the same breath we say, keep on keeping on, because we’re not there yet. It is nearing twilight, and there is still much work to be done.

Let’s celebrate the life, destiny, and freedom of all women–past, present, and future–their potential, their dreams, and their ability to accomplish great things with the help of a united voice championing their powerful destiny.

Join me on Twitter @DestinysWomen

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

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