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CVJC Numbers: What we mean by …

Victims, Survivors and Advocates Resourced

94 people were resourced in a tangible way – this includes groceries, clothing, backpacks, emergency housing, consultations, referrals, transportation, advocacy, and prayer. These 94 people were victims or survivors of trafficking or advocates who identified a direct relationship with a victim or survivor.

My Life My Choice Girls

55 girls ages 12-18 participated in a one-day workshop or a 6-8 week program focused on preventing commercial sexual exploitation of children. These girls were incarcerated in juvenile hall, in group homes, or local churches in high-risk areas.

Presentations and Trainings

68 provided to adults and youth, including Human Trafficking 101 and more!

Individuals Educated

3,343 or more received person to person education about preventing human trafficking. 112 people attended our full three-hour workshop, “Human Trafficking 101”. This does not reflect numbers from television, radio, or online communication.

Prayer Events

We did 19 both on our campus and in areas of Fresno most known for exploitation

Hours Volunteered

803 hours were reported as given by our volunteers to fulfill our mission of preventing trafficking

This year has been groundbreaking! We’ve trained 112 people this year through Human Trafficking 101 to take immediate action steps for freedom.

Just 6 months ago, we trained over 50 people with an extended version of our 101 class and followed it with a training for My Life My Choice prevention groups.

This summer we led a MLMC class at First Baptist Church and are launching two more this month in group homes.

The girls who attend MLMC groups are generally at the highest risk for exploitation in our community.

They are young, they have often been exploited already, and they are making crucial choices in their lives about who to trust and how to live.

In our session at Juvenile Hall with YFC, 6 of the 12 girls were already victims of sex trafficking. This summer, we ran the program at First Baptist in Fresno. These girls could look back and identify times they were nearly recruited. They are now leaders who have become peer advocates – they are discovering their identity in Christ and seeing how that connects to sex trafficking.

This is just a small glimpse of what we do at the Justice Coalition. We welcome people to our office regularly and provide food, clothing, emergency supplies, encouragement, and long-term help.

We partner with churches who refer victims from their own faith communities to us.

We educate and advocate. We pray fervently that God continues to help us gather partners near and far so we INCREASE OUR IMPACT.

We want all have the opportunity to be free.

This month, we need your help! Please join us and give generously so we can continue expanding this work!

Thanks to our partners at True Organic Products, every dollar is doubled – would you join us?

Start supporting us monthly and your first gift is doubled as well! Just send it to us before November 18th.

– Jessica Pittman, founder.

Freedom Sunday Info 2016crop

Today, there was a very Big Game that was played in San Francisco.

Athletes who get paid millions of dollars competed in the 50th annual football championship and many of us cheered. Meanwhile, around the world, millions of people worked and didn’t get paid fairly for that work. It is estimated that there are 21 million labor trafficking victims globally.

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We are proud to be a part of a coalition of people and churches here in the Central Valley who will not accept that modern day slavery should continue unchallenged.

Today, across Fresno and Clovis, Christians observed Freedom Sunday, forming a united front against the onslaught of labor trafficking. Stay tuned for detailed reports and testimonies from our committed team of volunteers, staff and clergy.

Let Freedom ring!

 

This week we have the privilege of sharing Jamelia Vicks’ incredible Freedom Story.

Born in Belize, trafficked across borders, hidden in plain sight and eventually rescued and empowered, she is now committed to making a difference for an estimated 21 million labor trafficking victims across the globe.

Jamelia is resilient, gracious and courageous as she shares her story. Yes, she was rescued but she also escaped as a result of her own determination. She is an inspiration to all of us.

As we prepare observe Freedom Sunday in the Central Valley on February 7th, I am reminded of the words of Arthur Ashe.

 

Start where you are.

Use what you have.

Do what you can. 

Each of us has a #FreedomStory to tell. You can make a difference for people trapped in modern day slavery. Start where you are.

– Ryan Townsend, Executive Director.

Trafficking (1)

“I’ve seen Taken, I know what human trafficking is.”

Chances are you’ve heard someone say this before. I know I have heard it a least a dozen times in the last couple months when I’ve been explaining to someone what my new job is at Central Valley Justice Coalition.

Believe it or not, I’m actually thankful that Hollywood and Television have put trafficking on the cultural radar. Even though, in reality, the world’s second-largest criminal enterprise is a messier, darker,infinitely more complex problem than you would think having seen a couple episodes of Law and Order: SVU or the Taken films.

At the Justice Coalition we are fasting and praying this month beginning today, January 11th, in part because there is no Liam Neeson coming to save the nearly-invisible victims of human trafficking in Fresno County and beyond.

There’s only you and me, there’s only us. And we need God’s help.

Today, January 11th, is also Human Trafficking Awareness Day. Which means a lot of people will be on social media raising awareness. Elected leaders will release statements. Businesses will make promises. But what comes next?

Liam Neeson isn’t going to save the world, but together, you and I can.

“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” – Mother Theresa

Becoming aware of a problem is the first step to doing something about that problem.

Months like January (HT Awareness Month) and days like today, even silly movies about fictional people being abducted by near-omniscient eastern European gangsters are helpful ONLY if they are the catalyst for something more concrete.

So today, let me encourage you to do something more than just feel bad for people who are being enslaved. Let me encourage you to Pray, Give, and Act.

You don’t have to do it alone. After all, you are not Liam Neeson.