The Commission on Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking honors programs that provide protection and care for at-risk children and help lead them into a full life in the Spirit. The Commission is aware that many congregations have programs that help prevent the trafficking of children, even if human trafficking is not the primary purpose of the program.
In order to highlight these programs and view them in a larger context, the Commission has created an award called “Miriam’s Gift.” This gift will award $500 to the program that best demonstrates concern for children at risk of being trafficked. Miriam’s Gift will be awarded by Bishop Robert Wright at the 2016 Annual Council in November.
The award is named for Miriam, the sister of Moses, who found a way to save her infant brother when Pharaoh ordered the death of all Hebrew baby boys. Years later, she led the Hebrew women from slavery in Egypt through the Red Sea to freedom. Because of her courage and creativity, many people found new life.
There are many factors that may put children at risk for sex trafficking:
- Incest and abuse
- Domestic violence
- Children who are runaways or “thrown away” by their parents
- Foster care
- Drug and alcohol abuse
- Low achievement in school
- Belonging to a vulnerable immigrant community
- Feelings of worthlessness
Programs that address children and youth who are at risk for trafficking are eligible for the award. Examples of such programs are those that focus on after-school tutoring, mentoring, summer programs, healthcare, sex education or meals and housing. Programs like these empower children and help to keep them from falling prey to sex traffickers.
Help make the Commission on Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking aware of the good work in which you are already engaged in on behalf of at-risk children. Find the application for the Miriam's Gift Award here. Please fill out the form and return it by Monday, October 3, 2016.
For further information, please call Deborah Bruno Betsill, chair of the Commission on Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking, at 770-815-1222 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.