In the fall of 2011 I traveled with a few friends to Springfield Missouri for a women's conference. During that time my friends and I laughed, cried, shopped, praised God and heard amazing stories and testimonies. But it was one story that has stayed with me and shook my soul.
On the 2nd day of the conference a young woman in her early 30's shared her story of being enslaved into sex trafficking. I have to admit that up until that moment I had never heard that term before. As she shared her story tears formed in my eyes and my stomach began to ache. Her ordeal was horrific. She was 22, had a good job, parents who loved her and many friends. She had just started dating a man who she met while at a nightclub with her friends. He was polite, respectful and had a job. They had been dating for a month when he picked her up at her apartment, went to dinner and then back to his apartment to watch a movie and have a glass of wine. The next thing she remembers is waking up in a warehouse, chained to a pole and stripped of all of her clothing. Her horrific 3 year journey into the sex trafficking trade had begun. She was branded, beaten, drugged, given very little food, transported to various places and given to multiple men through out any given day. Her journey ended when she was able to escape her captors when a door of a warehouse wasn't shut tight and she was able to remove her arms from the chains that bound her.
Over the last 5 years I have often thought of that young woman. I can still remember her face and how her voice quivered as she told her story. Over this last year I have attended two events where I heard from public officials here in Siouxland who help rescue those who are enslaved into sex trafficking and also help them find rehabilitation. I also have a friend who travels each year to the city that hosts the Super Bowl and prays with a group the week before the game as another group tries to locate and find those who have been brought in to provide services in the sex trafficking trade. The Super Bowl has the highest amount of individuals who are brought in for prostitution.
This year I am teaming up with my friend Jen and a few other women for Dressember. Dressember is a grass roots event that helps to highlight and bring awareness of those who have been and are enslaved into sex trafficking. The mission of the Dressember Foundation is:
DRESSEMBER IS FREEDOM-- THAT EVERY WOMAN HAS THE RIGHT TO LIVE A VIBRANT AND AUTONOMOUS LIFE.
For the next 31 days of December I will be wearing a dress each day while raising money to help those who have been rescued from slavery, sexual exploitation, and other forms of violent oppression. If you would like to donate please go to my pagehttps://support.dressemberfoundation.org/fundraiser/857479.
Or for more information go towww.dressember.org.
You can also read Amy Breitmann's blog on why she is participating in Dressember this year.
If you are unable to give financially I ask that you take time each day to pray for those who are enslaved that they too will be rescued.