High school students have the unique ability to fight human trafficking. They have access to the information, the technologies, and the time they need to make a real difference in their communities. Below are 10 starting points:
- Start an anti-trafficking blog, in as many languages as you can manage. There are some good blogs which deal with trafficking in English, but they are few and far between. Other languages are even sparser.
- Talk to friends about human trafficking–every country has internal and transnational trafficking, and need to know how to protect themselves from employment scams.
- Learn more about human trafficking. Polaris Project’s Action Center has a large number of films, clips, books, and articles to support your understanding of human trafficking.
- When you feel ready, start to teach Human Trafficking 101. First, teach it to your club members. Then, ask to speak for 5 minutes about human trafficking at all of the other clubs in your school. Then, ask if you can talk about it to a professional group in your area–the Lions, or Rotary Club, or Elks. You may get rejected, but every time you speak you are helping.
- Get to know trafficking in your area. The United States Department of State creates country reports for every country including the United States.
- If possible, volunteer at a local non-profit that helps victims of trafficking. You can find out which ones are in your area if you’re in the U.S. by calling the national human trafficking hotline: 1-888-373-7888.
- If you are a person of faith, learn about how abolitionists used the Bible to fight slavery in the 19th century. Perhaps ask your religious leader how to deal with modern-day slavery through your faith.
- Write about human trafficking. If you are expected to create a capstone project for your senior year, do it on child tourism, or labor trafficking, or write a story about a victim of trafficking who was rescued (or not).
- Use art. Though photographing victims of trafficking re-victimizes them by making them into objects of study, if you feel safe you could take photos of the places they work. Safety is vital here–never put yourself in danger. If you sing or play an instrument, you could write a song and/or make a movie for YouTube educating people on human trafficking.
- Apply to be a intern for an organization which fights human trafficking.
“Happy and thrice happy are those who enjoy an uninterrupted union, and whose love, unbroken by any sour complaints, shall not dissolve until the last day of their existence.”–Horace
Interesting. I’m actually friends with Jessica Johnson, who is at the head of the Northern VA grassroots level effort to fight human trafficking.