In 2009 I was one of a tiny group that marched around Lake Eola in downtown Orlando to tell people that modern-day slavery was happening in their backyard.
There were exactly 25 of us...
...and the handful of people who listened thought we were crazy saying that slavery was going on right in our city. In fact, the geese, ducks, and swans paid more attention to us than people did.
That was 2009. Every January we've continued marching and rallying. And each year the event has grown. Last year more than 100 anti-trafficking organizations and service providers participated (including Born2Fly)-- and a whopping 6,000 people attended.
As a result of doing this event year after year -- coupled with the incredible year-round work of the Greater Orlando Human Trafficking Task Force (GOHTTF) and Florida Abolitionist, which host the annual event -- arrests of traffickers and rescues of victims in central Florida have skyrocketed.
In the first 5 months of 2014, central Florida averaged a rescue every other DAY. You probably thought I was going to say every other week or month, didn't you?
Join us on Saturday
This Saturday is Orlando's 8th annual Human Trafficking Awareness Day -- and all those numbers will grow even higher. We invite you to join us and move beyond awareness to action:
8th annual Human Trafficking Awareness Day
Sat., Jan. 23, 2016 | 11 am - 4 pm
Walt Disney Amphitheater at Lake Eola
101 North Rosalind Avenue
Orlando, FL 32801
- Music, booths, and speakers
- Children/youth tent featuring Born2Fly with age-appropriate activities
- Men's and women's tents with special speakers
- Film tent with screenings of anti-trafficking films
- Fair-trade shopping
- Art exhibit
- Food trucks
Born2Fly is featured in the children's tent again this year -- so please come on by. Throughout the day I'll be speaking to kids (very age appropriate), teens (very in-your-face), and parents. B2F will also have a booth along with 100+ other organizations working to fight trafficking in Orlando, around the country, and across the globe.
We'll go beyond awareness to specific ways you can keep your kids safe and how you can get involved in the fight to stop the traffic. Hope to see you there!
“You will bring justice to the orphans and the oppressed, so people can no longer terrify them” (Psalm 10:18).
You = God + you + me. Thank you for making success stories like this possible.