On Jan. 30, Students for Violence Prevention (SVP) hosted an event called Breaking the Chains of Human Trafficking. The event featured speaker and author Sandy Storm. Storm shared her story while providing education about human trafficking. The event also provided other resources in the community to help stop human trafficking. People who attended the event were also able to participate in a self-care station and win prize.
“It’s important to have these events because this is still a new conversation, we need to do more than just educate, we need to get people a place where they can act and do something about it, so that we can work more on the prevention and not just the response,” said Stephanie Spitz, Campus Victim Advocate and advisor for SVP.
Author Sandy Storm spoke at the event about her life and experience being trafficked as a sex slave.
“I’m an author, speaker and abolitionist and I use to story of what happened to me when I was trafficked as a sex slave as a child, as a runaway as a teenager, and as a young person addicted to drugs, and when I was trafficked in the industry of commercial sexual exploration, “Storm said. “Now that I’m free and now that I have a voice, I use that story to inspire, educate, and empower our community for true societal change.”
Storm’s goal is to educate people about human trafficking while sharing her story.
“I definitely learned a lot more than I thought I knew,” said Shelby Lusker said, who is a senior nursing student. “…so, it was very informative, and I feel like it just opened my eyes to a whole new perspective on things, because it is a huge topic, especially with Instagram now, I’ve seen lots of post over it, so it’s just more awareness.”
The event had resources such as law enforcement, medical staff, and counselors attend to answer questions at booths.
“We wanted to give [Storm] an opportunity to share, and also give people in the community and campus a space to share their resources,” Spitz said. “…so, we wanted to make sure they have that education but also a call to response.”
After the event, the attendees could participate in a self-care station, win prizes, and buy Storm’s books.
Storm spoke at the event for several reasons.
“The main things that I want to impact people with are inspiration that there is hope because I got out, and there is hope that there could be a better life, that there can be a new life,” Storm said. “I want to educate and bring the truth about trafficking without all of the trauma and misinformation that’s spreading through social media, and I want to inspire true societal change, because I believe that we can truly bring an end to human trafficking. I believe that this generation, that’s on the earth right now can make a difference and can make a culture that stops consuming people and stops putting a price on a person and stops the buying and selling of bodies and souls. “