Imagine a normal October Saturday in St Andrews: students, locals and tourists going about their business and enjoying the chilly but sunny weather. Saturday the 17th of October was different.
Imagine a group of more than one hundred people, all dressed in black with tape over their mouths, walking in single file throughout the town. Traffic was stopped, heads were turned and awareness was raised.
We walk because 27 million people in slavery cannot.
We walk because 98-99% of people are never rescued.
We walk because the average age of a trafficking victim is 12 years old.
We walk because every 30 seconds someone is trafficked.
We walk because 1.2 million children are trafficked each year.
We walk because 50% of trafficking victims are minors.
We walk because we can.
"The Walk For Freedom is our collective effort to heighten awareness of modern-day slavery and raise funds to take us one step closer to ending human trafficking in our lifetime." - The A21 Campaign
It is difficult to think that slavery still happens nowadays, and in our own countries - but it does and you have probably benefited from it. Victims of trafficking are exploited every second of every day. We have the ability and power to change this.
The A21 campaign aims to abolish injustice in the 21st century. They have a four pronged strategy against human trafficking: prevention, protection, prosecution and partnership. I would really recommend taking some time to read their aims and plans for achieving their goal. On the website there are some really good ways for you to help and contribute to the cause. In the next few weeks I want to gather some friends and write letters to victims who have been rescued and are now living in one of the A21 safe houses. Next year the Walk for Freedom will happen on Saturday the 15th of October, join a walk and help raise awareness!
I have participated in demonstrations before but never anything like this walk. It was an amazing and enlightening experience. Seeing my friends and fellow students being passionate and caring for a very important cause was something I could only pray for. As mentioned in a previous post I have joined a Just Love group at my university and we plan to continue to support The A21 Campaign.
Your light will rise in the darkness.