Jeanette Lopez: 2016 Miami Convening Reflection

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The IHTI Miami Convening: Student’s Taking Action Against Human Trafficking was the catalyst in reigniting an anti-human trafficking movement and awareness at FIorida International University (FIU). On campus. I have been actively involved in anti-human trafficking work and have volunteered to help raise awareness at various events.

Still, I realized that there was not a permanent, centralized organization on campus responsible for carrying out anti-human trafficking initiatives throughout the year. So there was no platform for partnering with other organizations, both on and off campus, to further shed light on this topic. Though at first I wasn’t quite sure how to go about it, the information I learned at the convening IHTI organized helped me generate ideas to bring this student initiative to life on my campus.

After the IHTI Miami Convening my goal became to start an anti-human trafficking organization on campus that will lead these efforts. Even better, I was contacted by the former president of an anti-human trafficking club at FIU called Not For Sale. She explained that the e-board had all graduated and new members were needed in order to reinstate the club.

After finding out that I didn’t have to start from scratch, I immediately informed my colleague Daniel Alvarez, a Social Work graduate student at FIU who was a facilitator at the convening, and Stephanie Sorquira from IHTI to begin brainstorming on how to carry out campus campaigns with awareness and action.

I am excited to see the plans unfold in the forthcoming days, and together start the path for FIU to be become part of leading the fight against modern day slavery in the community.  

By | 2016-09-26T11:07:22+00:00 September 26th, 2016|Solutions, Student Organizing, Uncategorized|0 Comments

About the Author:

Jeanette Lopez is a current graduate student at Florida International University pursuing her degree in Public Administration with a certificate in National Security Studies. She first heard about human trafficking in 2012 when she attended a conference held by Christine Caine, founder of the A21 Campaign. Ever since hearing Christine's testimony and how the organization is combating human trafficking, Jeanette knew it was her calling to go out and join the fight. After days of researching and learning about the facts, Jeanette came across organizations right in Miami that are fighting for the same cause and began to volunteer for them along with joining the South Florida Human Trafficking Task Force. Jeanette also volunteered with on-campus organizations that were hosting events to raise awareness at FIU. Noticing that there were many students passionate about making a difference in ending human trafficking but not enough awareness and action taking place throughout the year, Jeanette decided to start taking steps to reignite an on-campus organization dedicated to this cause. Jeanette believes that every single person can make a difference to help end modern day slavery.
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