March 4th’s Programming Day: Awareness of Human Trafficking

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Elizabeth Gomez, Junior Editor

Human trafficking, also known as “modern-day slavery,” is a prevalent crisis in the United States. Between 20,000 to 50,000 individuals a year are trafficked in this country, with 80% of them being women. Education has proved to be a successful and beneficial way of preventing more from becoming victims of human trafficking, which seniors Ellie Keaton, Gianna Troilo, Lauren Schumacher, and Isabel Llopis, members of Lead4Change, saw necessary to present to the school. They worked tirelessly to create and organize a Programming Day that would educate the Junior Class on what human trafficking is, how it is carried out, and how to avoid becoming a victim of it. They invited alumna Kate Daniels Imbesi ’92 and Mary Pugh, Executive Director of MCAP (Montgomery Child Advocacy Project), to speak to the juniors about their personal experiences with working with victims of human trafficking. As well, they taught the girls the signs and stages of human trafficking, how to prevent yourself from becoming a victim, and how to advocate for ending this form of modern-day slavery. Before their presentation, Mercy Effect members Sydney Pasceri ’21, Lyndsey James ’21, and Maddie Gibson ’22 shared some stories of human trafficking victims from around the globe, showing how this horror is prevalent in all countries.