By Caleb Parke

“I didn’t know slavery still exists.”

This phrase, uttered by a young girl as she passed by our silent protest, struck me the most.

I joined around 600 others, marching single file – with tape over our mouths – from Washington Square Park to Columbus Circle in New York City – all for one purpose: to raise awareness about and help end modern-day slavery, human trafficking.

The A21 Campaign hosted the 3rd annual Walk for Freedom in New York City and at locations around the world on Saturday, Oct. 15. Participants joined a silent single file walk on behalf of the 27 million men, women, and children who are still trapped in slavery today.

The event is a collective effort led by A21, a global anti-human trafficking organization dedicated to fighting slavery and abolishing injustice in the 21st century. A21’s desire with the Walk For Freedom is to shine a global spotlight on human trafficking and raise funds to continue their efforts to rescue, restore, and rebuild lives.

The problem of modern-day slavery is complex, but A21’s solution is simple: Prevention, Protection, Prosecution, and Partnership.

Last year, there were over 200 walks in 28 nations around the world. Collectively, there were over 12,000 participants and close to 45 million people reached through social media. This year A21 hopes to raise even more awareness and funds to bring about change in the fight against human trafficking.

I encourage you to do something. Donate. Share this story or another story that raises awareness to human trafficking. Get others to join you.

A21 has 21 ways you can help, but here are just a few of them:

1. Get Social:

That’s right, we want to be social with social media. Whether through Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, you can find ways to connect with us for updated information, as well as quickly share information with your friends and family. It’s the easiest way to spread the word, as well as to stay connected to freedom fighters all over the globe.

For example:

Participated in the #WalkforFreedom with my Hillsong NYC crew in New York City to end modern-day slavery/human trafficking. ❌✖❌

A post shared by Caleb Parke (@calebparke) on

2. Make Videos Viral:

What if you had just as much enthusiasm for justice as you did for those funny cat videos on YouTube? Plaster your online presence with videos to grab people’s attention.

3. Show Your Stuff:

Write a blog about why we should fight against human trafficking; paint a picture and display it publicly; use a sports event to raise awareness and funds; write a song or talk about human trafficking at a concert; create a short film and post it on YouTube.

4. Pray:

Human trafficking is nothing short of evil, but don’t underestimate the power of prayer.  If you would like to obtain a prayer guide, visit our downloads for print.

5. Supply the Solution:

The truth is that every single one of us is wired to be able to bring a truly unique solution to a very real problem occurring today. This list of 21 things does not end here. In fact, it does not end at all.  The reality is that if you want to make a difference in the fight against human trafficking, you can. If there is still breath in your lungs and a beat in your heart, you have the opportunity to add to this list!

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October 18, 2016

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