"Human Trafficking" or "Sex Trafficking"... phrases we hear and think of war-torn places, countries where women are openly mistreated, etc. When I sat down with an OBS (Operation Broken Silence) staff member this week, I told her I'd heard these terms plenty of times throughout college, especially with the trafficking of child soldiers, made to fight ugly wars and develop lifelong wounds, on the inside and out.
And though I can't say images of my own city, Memphis, Tenn., come to mind when I think of trafficking, this reality is here with us.
When a teenager runs away from a bad situation at home and is given an offer to make money giving his or her body away, this is trafficking. Though only one example of many, when a person is a "good" to be sold, earning profit for someone else, we speak of trafficking.
This Friday, June 29, at 8pm, Jeff and I will be joined by our friend Brian von Shulz of Hattiesburg, Miss., to show up and play tunes to raise awareness and funds for Operation Broken Silence and Tennessee's first shelter for trafficking victims, right here in Memphis!
The most immediate need is for an emergency shelter, a place where a trafficked person can be brought to escape imminent danger, receive care and have access to other resources.
The long-term plan is for a residential shelter, for recovery, education, protection and nurturing, and a host of other things to bring wholeness back to those living there.
Check out the OBS Blog to see the latest and COME TO THE SHOW! They'll be there with more information, and you'll get to hear some good music, too!