Nonprofit set to help victims of trafficking
By Rebecca Hoeffnerrhoeffner@tylerpaper.com
A local nonprofit is seeking a partnership with 500 organizations to raise money for a safe house for minor girls who are victims of the sex trafficking industry.
Refuge of Light, a faith-based organization, has issued a “500 Church Challenge” to churches, businesses and individuals to help it reach its goal of $1.2 million with $2,500 donations for the safe house.
“Each girl should know that they have more to offer than the misuse of their bodies,” according to the written release. “We realize that can only happen through the mentorship of loving individuals, counseling and the unconditional love of Jesus Christ. Ultimately, Refuge wants to see these girls transition back into life and society as an individual that has self-worth and value.”
The organization, which is partnered with Buckner International ministry, is currently focusing on education, awareness and prevention programs in the Juvenile Justice System while working toward the construction of a safe home.
The sex trafficking industry is often referred to by experts as modern-day slavery.
“Estimates place the number of its domestic and international victims in the millions, mostly females and children enslaved in the commercial sex industry for little or no money,” reads the FBI’s website.
So far, about 20 churches have pledged donations with Refuge of Light, assistant director Missy Zivney said.
The organization is still looking for a local representative in Tyler.
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