While almost all of us in the United States often take our freedom for granted, millions don’t have that blessing in their lives. These are men, women, and especially children, and even include some 60,000 living in this nation.
Operation Underground Railroad (O.U.R.) rescues and rehabilitates enslaved children across the globe, supported by contributions from people who care. They rescue kidnapped children from sex slavery and help dismantle the criminal networks that abuse them. They are now partnered with the Elizabeth Smart Foundation to increase the reach of their rescue and rehabilitation efforts. They also work closely with the Child Rescue Association of North America.
As reported in the current issue of their publication The Lantern, O.U.R. states there are more people enslaved now than at any point in history! Estimates vary but the Walk Free Foundation states over 30 million. Whatever the count, it is an unconscionable number! As a powerful video on the Walk Free website states, even one slave is one slave too many. And we need the participation of businesses across the globe to stop their shameful tolerance of slavery in their supply chains.
Operation Underground Railroad uses the lantern that was the symbol of hope and refuge in the 1800s when abolitionists used it to guide slaves from the southern United States to safe places in the north. Today O.U.R. uses the lantern as a symbol of light and freedom for the children held captive. Men and women of conscience are still fighting for freedom from slavery today, slavery as they say that has moved behind closed doors.
Whenever they go into a country to rescue a child or children, O.U.R. always works with law enforcement agencies so that the criminals are prosecuted, in addition to the children being rescued. Founder Tim Ballard’s team consists of select former Navy Seals, Special Forces and CIA.
Rescued victims of sex slavery need a great deal of assistance recovering from their horrible ordeals. In the United States, they will now receive help through the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of 2015 that President Barack Obama signed into law on May 29, 2015 after a long delay in the Senate. Funding will come from fines paid by the perpetrators, as well as money already set aside by Congress.
At this holiday time where we have been celebrating the Fourth of July and our freedoms, please consider donating to Operation Underground Railroad. The rescued children are not yet old enough to understand how they were rescued or who made it possible, but their gratitude cannot be measured.