There is so much meaning to that word. It can stop someone’s tears, give someone a foundation for a future, and remind the average Jane that there is hope for today amidst the chaos of this world. With this blog, I’d like to focus on the fact that there is always hope, in every situation, every turmoil, and every horrifying news update, because we serve a God who is greater. We serve the God who is the author of all hope. David questions in Psalms 39:7, “but now, Lord, what do I look for?” and then responds with, “my hope is in you.” That is the true essence of these blog updates—projecting hope, and the vision of Wellspring Living in dealing with the issue of human trafficking.
My name is Jessica Smith, a native Atlantian and new Communications Coordinator for Wellspring Living. I have seen the poorest of this world, both in spirit and in material; desperately seeking the same thing we all seek, hope. I’ve seen women exploited in Thailand; helped survivors of the earthquake in Haiti, held abandoned babies in South Africa, and created a global family during my world mission experience, all to be brought back to my hometown, and see that those same things are happening in my own back yard. Women and children are still being exploited, and babies are still being abandoned. It’s just a little closer to home than I expected.
When I discovered that Atlanta was one of the number one cities in the U.S. for child sex-trafficking, I knew they Lord had brought me back to this very place for that specific reason. I was sitting in ChristChurch, a Presbyterian Church in downtown Atlanta, on a cool and rainy Sunday night when all of these facts became a reality. I was tapping the end of my pen on my opened journal as I listened to stories about at-risk girls, how they are lured in, and what makes Atlanta such a popular hub for this cruel trade. Pushing through the How could this happen? questions, and What am I doing to help? thoughts, I came to the consensus that I wasn’t going to let the depressing facts hold me back from being part of the solution.
When discussing how we were going to format this blog, we decided that we wanted it to be a venue for people to A) understand the problem, B) actively choose to be a part of the solution, and C) celebrate the fact that there still is hope. All of this to say, Wellspring Living is an active participant in the solution to this atrocity. The organization exists to restore and rehabilitate these girls into the beautiful women they were created to be. Wellspring participates in not only freeing these girls from bondage, they actively pursue partnerships with the community to rally people around the issue as a team, and help stop this injustice.
Over the next few blog posts, I will be illustrating how these young girls become entrapped in this modern-day slavery. ‘Human trafficking’ can be a lofty and confusing stamp on this issue, so I’d like to explain the process and give you some specific ways to get involved. Please feel free to email me stories, questions, and comments for each post, so we can actively work together to eradicate this issue in Atlanta!
***Every time you read an update, please take a few minutes to pray for these girls and the ministry of Wellspring Living. We operate solely on God’s provision, and need people to rally around us in prayer***