Getting the Word Out

by Karen Karpinski, Director of Education

 Dear Volunteers, 

 As we close out 2014 and enter the new year I'd like to thank you for your passion and  dedication to the mission of End Slavery Tennessee and ask that you continue that same level of dedication.  With your assistance we were able to train many youth about the lures of trafficking and train professionals who encounter victims  in their work.  You gave generously when we asked for the needs of survivors; you collected gift cards; provided birthday celebrations and baby showers and generously contributed for a wonderful Christmas for every survivor. You rode, walked or helped with the Ride for Refuge and solicited many sponsors; you mentored or taught GED classes. You drove survivors to appointments,  stuffed envelopes, wrapped presents, took down shelves and carted away things, painted and decorated to make our offices warm and welcoming.  You made sure every new referral had a welcome kit and food kit to meet their immediate needs. You are truly awesome and it has been such a pleasure to work with you.  

 In this new year ESTN will be hiring a new Volunteer Manager so that I can concentrate on the advanced education so dearly needed.  I know that I can count on you to be the great volunteers we have come to depend on, but I have one request as I move on.   Please begin (or continue) to log onto our website and record your hours in the Volgistics Volunteer  Program.  Laura and I will be re-sending passwords to all of you who have not yet logged on.  This is very important to us.  Each hour that you record for volunteering is equivalent to $22.14. When we apply for grants we are able to show how you, our volunteers contribute to our bottom line.  Be as proud of what you do as we  are of you. Log your hours! Thank-you. 

Why I Volunteer - Ashley

by Ashley Hargest   

When I would hear about human trafficking, I always thought it was something that only went on in other countries. I never thought of it happening in my own backyard. When I first became aware of how much trafficking is currently going on in my own city, I couldn't believe it.

The first time I really started comprehending what human trafficking is, I was in shock, then I became angry, then my heart completely hurt for these people who aren't even treated as human beings. When I read that the average age girl who is trafficked is the same age as my little sister, something started stirring inside me even more. I can’t even imagine.

I was recently watching some videos and hearing the stories of some of the survivors in the area and I was sitting there, tears rolling down my face, feeling completely sick to my stomach. There was no way I could continue to sit on the side and not take action. As I sit here in the comfort of my own home, many victims all around me are fighting for their lives. I want to be a part of something that strives to put an end to this gut wrenching “business”. I want to be a part of something that seeks to show these victims their worth and value and to know that they are loved. This is why I’m so blessed to get to be a part of what End Slavery Tennessee is doing!

To learn more about what's happening in YOUR backyard and what End Slavery Tennessee is doing about it, watch this five-minute video.

[vimeo http://vimeo.com/61593231]