Over the past few years MN has partnered with FREE International, an AG organization working to end human trafficking in the U.S. “Until everyone is free” is a big mission statement to live by, but that is exactly what they are doing. They are committed to rescuing and protecting the ONE who is being exploited because of human trafficking through this FREE process: Find, Restore, Embrace, and Empower.
My name is Morgan Pearson, and I am part of the MN Student Ministries team at the MN District Council. I had the honor of traveling to Las Vegas for the week leading up to the Super Bowl to participate in FREE’s “The Big Search”. While the Super Bowl is an epicenter for human trafficking, more people travel to Las Vegas that week than the actual host location. Fortunately, that is where FREE’s headquarters is located, and their team collaborates with local law enforcement and organizations to find missing kids – most of which are in trafficking situations.
In early February, teams came from across the U.S. to search for these vulnerable youth. The goal of the week was training, equipping, and collaborating, in efforts to find those missing. One aspect of the week was distributing missing children booklets to hotels and various locations where they could be spotted.
Some takeaways I had from the week were when your discernment tells you something isn’t right, follow it (in a safe way) and to share what you see. The information you have could be the missing piece in helping someone. This year’s “The Big Search” in Las Vegas rescued 15 missing kids and 3 missing adults – a HUGE win! Each one of their stories and lives are incredibly significant.
Another highlight was seeing the mobile unit purchased solely through the efforts of MN students and leaders through Speed the Light (pictured above). These units are crucial to the work FREE does, designed to be portable command centers for their operations in searching, and rescuing the exploited. It was rewarding to see the hard work and sacrifices from people in our state come to life and put into action, truly making an impact.
Thank you to our MN Pastors and leaders for investing in FREE International through STL!