By Dia Gill | Web Managing Editor
Last Friday, February 23rd, International Justice Mission held a fair in the ALC LGI room to mark the End It Movement, an international celebration for the fight against human trafficking. Attendees were able to mark their hands with a red X, hear from local organizations combating human trafficking and participate in arts and crafts. President Hope Miller organized the event in cooperation with outside organizations and other studies.
What was the purpose of the IJM fair?
Miller: On Friday, February 23rd we held a fair to celebrate the annual human trafficking awareness movement, #EndItMovement. Each year, people all across America draw red X’s on their fists and post a picture of them to social media with the hashtag #EndItMovement to show that they are in the fight to end human trafficking. In an effort to provide our students with an opportunity to stand up against trafficking, we hosted a fair that included a photo booth, four local anti-trafficking organizations and craft projects that were given to the organizations that attended.
What organizations were present?
Miller: We had four organizations at the event: Ascent 121, Restored Inc., All Worthy of Love, and Purchased. The purpose of having these organizations at the event was to give students an insider look into human trafficking from the perspective of those who have actually committed their lives to ending sex slavery.
Would you say it was successful?
Miller: The fair was very organized and put together. All the organizations that showed interest in the event came, and those that attended were able to learn more about trafficking and support the fight against it. We just wished that more people would have been there to take part in the fight.
What is the mission of IJM?
Miller: Our mission is to educate, motivate and activate the students of Avon High School by raising awareness about human trafficking and supporting local anti-trafficking organizations by volunteering and doing service projects.
As president, what is your goal for the club?
Miller: Our goal for this year is to inform Avon High School students that human trafficking is a real issue and give them the opportunity to do something about it. Typically, we think that sex slavery and labor trafficking only exists in third world countries but it is everywhere- even in our own community. These young victims buy into the lie that they are only good for their bodies and that their worth is defined by the money value they are given. That is why we need to use our voice to speak up for these victims and the trauma they have gone through.
If someone wants to get involved with IJM what should they do?
Miller: It is never too late to get involved with IJM! If you want to know when we are having our next meeting, sign up for Remind by texting @hbebbd to 81010.