New Creation Event To Raise Awareness About Human Trafficking
An upcoming event in Highland County is focusing on how to counteract human trafficking. Sabrina Dorman-Andrew is the Co-Founding Executive Director of New Creation. She begins, “New Creation is a nonprofit based in Harrisonburg, Virginia, and our mission is to creatively counteract human trafficking, and we do that, really, with a local heart and a global approach, and, so, our mission’s twofold. The first portion is to really empower and employ those that have come out of and been rescued from or are vulnerable to human trafficking, so we have two shops that help do that portion, and then the other side of it is, really, to raise awareness here locally. What does human trafficking look like? How is it happening domestically, and how can I be a part of the solution?”
Monterey Presbyterian Church will host an evening with Sabrina and her husband/New Creation Co-Founder, Steven, on January 17th. “We’re excited!” says Ms. Dorman-Andrew. “We’re actually gonna bring the New Creation shop with us so people can see the items that the survivors make and they can purchase, and that’s a really powerful way that they can be involved in what New Creation does, and then the other side, we’re gonna do a community awareness chat, and those are always powerful because the typical American hears the term, ‘human trafficking,’ and immediately thinks, ‘international.’ They don’t necessarily think it’s happening in the town that they live in, and, so, we really want to dive in to, ‘What does it look like domestically? How is it happening? Who are the victims? Who are the traffickers? What are some of the common lures that traffickers use?’ so the community can be aware.
“It’s really important for people to understand that here in the U.S., the average age of a trafficking victim is just twelve, so that’s a middle school student, and we need to have good conversations within our communities, and then take that home and have good conversations with our students, so New Creation’s excited to be in your community and talk to you about this issue in a way, not to strike fear, but to raise awareness and, really, hopefully, prevent this from ever being something that affects your community.”
Sabrina is also planning to speak at Highland High School. She continues, “The reality is a lot of students are hearing stories of human trafficking, but they don’t understand it, and they, really, have little knowledge of what it actually looks like, and students, once they understand the issue, the vast majority of what we see is kids want to get involved. They wanna do something. They wanna raise awareness. They wanna get involved in counteracting trafficking. I’m excited to do that in Monterey.”
And for those who want to learn more, Ms. Dorman-Andrew says, “One of the really important things that we want people to know is there is a National Human Trafficking Hotline that is operated in our country, and if anybody ever were to find themselves in a position that they needed help or they needed information about trafficking, they can call this number, which is 1-888-373-7888. Anybody who wants to know more about New Creation can always jump on our website, which is www.newcreationva.org. They can also follow us on social media. We’re ‘New Creation VA’ on Facebook, on Pinterest, and Instagram, so that’s a great way for people to just follow along with what we do and how we counteract trafficking and learn more about our organization and what they can do.”
The community event is free and open to the public, beginning around 4:30 pm at Monterey Presbyterian Church on Thursday, January 17th. Survivor-made goods and fair trade accessories will be available, followed by a presentation and chat at 5:30 and then a provided meal at 6:30. Due to content, ages 12 and up are recommended.