Freedom – 1 Week, 1 Day, 1 Sunday at a Time

If you are part of a church community, and are asking yourself what you or your church can do about the 27 million+ people in modern day slavery… Right now I have the easiest answer – Freedom Sunday!

This is a non-denominational event where you as the church decide how you are going to celebrate. Last year I attended a church service in Cape Town where they chose to play the New Arrivals PSA from the Not For Sale South Africa youtube, they then spoke for about 5 minutes on human trafficking and spent some time in prayer. A quick, easy, first step to abolition.

Other people are taking Freedom Sunday to a whole ‘nother level… Like Tara Teng, a university student who also happens to be Miss Canada 2011. She is organising an entire Freedom Week happening in the Fraser Valley, BC, Canada. The grand finale will be Freedom Sunday on March 13, 2011.

Where ever you are in the world, you can sign your church up to be a part of Freedom Sunday. Churches all around the globe are doing it!

But if you are in the BC, Canada’s Fraser Valley, I highly recommend you not only sign up for Freedom Sunday, but you join Tara in stepping up the fight by attending or volunteering at one of the Freedom Week events. Then bring the passion and new things you learned to your church on Sunday, March 13th, so that you give it your all for Freedom Sunday, because nobody should be FOR SALE in your community!!

To learn more and view the Freedom Week video check out this link here: http://impact.twu.ca/project/project.aspx?asset=637

Below is a letter from Tara explaining why Freedom Week…

Freedom Week- March 6-13, 2011

Project Image 

FREEDOM WEEK: Because slavery is bad and we want it to stop.

That’s the goal. It’s very simple: One week to raise as much funds as possible and to tell as many people as possible, because slavery is bad and we want it to stop!

Although slavery was legally abolished in the British Empire by William Wilberforce in 1807 and by the United Nations in 1949, there are currently an estimated 27 MILLION slaves living worldwide. This means that there are more slaves in the world today, than at any other point in human history.

Fast facts on Modern-day Slavery:

  1. – The modern-day slave industry generates profits of 32 billion dollars each year.  (International Labor Organization).
  2. – Slavery happens in 161 countries worldwide, including Canada. (United Nations Global Initiative to fight Human Trafficking.)
  3. – The average victim of human trafficking is 12-14 years old. (US Department of Justice).
  4. 79% of all modern-day slavery is forced prostitution and other forms of sexual exploitation (United Nations).

According to the United Nations Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially women and children, human trafficking is defined as:

“Trafficking in persons shall mean the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payment or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labor or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs.”

Freedom Week is a week of awareness and call to action on modern-day slavery. Freedom Week is a series of events that are taking place from Greater Vancouver to the Fraser Valley of British Columbia from March 6 to 13, 2011.

Freedom Week is centered on three main goals:

  1. To raise awareness to the general public to understand the issues of modern-day slavery and human trafficking.
  2. To introduce the general public to partnership with various organizations that are working on the front lines of fighting human trafficking, like the International Justice Mission.
  3. To provide the general public of Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley with ways to take action for this cause, like walking with us during the Freedom March on Saturday, March 12, 2011.

As followers of Christ, we desire to “Learn to do good; seek justice, rebuke the oppressor; defend the fatherless, and plead the case of the widow.” Isaiah 1:17. We are called as Christians to seek justice, to be a voice for the voiceless and to proclaim freedom for captives.

Furthermore, Trinity Western University is focused on training Godly leaders of character who will make an impact for Christ in our world— we need to recognize God’s heart for social justice and stand together with the oppressed.

I am asking for your support and inviting you to be part of the movement that God is leading to set captives free in our country and in our world.

Please join with us, because slavery is bad and we want it to stop.

With Conviction,

Tara Teng

-Third-year TWU Education student, President of the TWU International Social Justice Club, Miss BC 2010-2011, Miss Canada 2011 and Coordinator of Freedom Week.

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