ZOE Partners with Santa Clarita, CA Churches for Anti-Trafficking Sundays

At ZOE International, our commitment to combating human trafficking begins with prevention and awareness efforts in the local community. We believe that education is the first crucial step in eliminating human trafficking.

Recently, ZOE partnered with local churches in the Santa Clarita Valley (SCV), CA for a significant initiative: SCV Anti-Trafficking Sundays. These events held the last two Sundays of January were aimed to raise awareness and mobilize communities to combat human trafficking. These Anti-Trafficking Sunday events served as a focal point for local churches and community members to come together, learn, and take action against the grave issue of child trafficking.

Pastor Cavin, from Northpark Community Church in Valencia, CA, shared, “ZOE International is one of the mission organizations that we’ve supported for many years. We are very familiar with ZOE’s work internationally and domestically including their rescue and restoration work with the victims of sex trafficking in LA County and Santa Clarita. 

I’m thankful for Ester, a representative from ZOE, who joined me last Sunday to discuss the reality of sex trafficking in SCV educating our congregation on prevention as well as ways our people could support ZOE International with their time, talents, and resources.” 

ZOE’s Assistant Western Regional Director, Ester Yu, shared about an impactful conversation she had after the event. “One church member shared that the exact warning I gave to the church about how boys are being targeted by predators happened to their family friend…a boy thought he was communicating with a female peer and sent compromising images to her, but instead it was a male predator who was blackmailing him. Thankfully he told his family and they were able to intervene. And that’s what’s important, that our children know, no matter what they have done or think they have done, they have a safe adult they can tell to help them. There is always a way out.”

The ZOE team would like to acknowledge the support of various churches in Santa Clarita, CA for their collaboration and community support along with ZOE staff representatives who shared their expertise and experiences in the ZOE’s prevention, rescue, and restoration programs below: 

  • Crossroads Community Church 
  • Valencia Hills Community Church
  • The Sanctuary
  • Northpark Community Church
  • Heart of the Canyons
  • High Vision Church 

A key ZOE community partner and SCV Human Trafficking Task Force Leader, Pastor Dan Broyles from Valencia Hills Community Church added, We are excited that about 10 churches in Santa Clarita agreed to bring greater awareness about human trafficking throughout our community and across the world. Churches agreed to spend time praying for, supporting and educating their respective congregations regarding an issue that is not just in other countries, but that is occurring in Santa Clarita and throughout Southern California. 

ZOE was able to speak at many of these churches, and ZOE continues to be a leader in both prevention and restoration regarding those impacted by trafficking. January is anti-trafficking month and the churches believe that they are called by God to care for people in need and this was one small step to care for those who do not have a voice.”

Pastor Jim from Heart of the Canyons shared, “Matthew 25 tells us that the greatest ministry we can give to Jesus is our ministry to the “least of these” (the poor, the hungry, the imprisoned — those who are in need). It’s time for the voices of those impacted by and trapped in human trafficking to be heard, supported, and protected and we are proud to partner with ZOE in their mission to reach every person and rescue every child.”

Another church partner from The Sanctuary, Pastor Marty Walker, shared, “It is our pleasure to continue our partnership with ZOE International. Having them (and their table) present at our Sunday morning services VERY IMPACTFUL. Their presence and availability to engage in conversations with information so vital in our world today was invaluable. Thank you, ZOE!”

Thanks to you, our faithful partners and supporters, together, we’re making strides towards a future where innocence is protected, and lives are transformed through Jesus. 

We believe that the Body of Christ carries the answer inside us for every crisis on earth.

If you are interested in having ZOE speak about human trafficking at your church, or bible study or have an information table, please email Ester Yu at ester@goZOE.org.

 

*Photo credit: Lucas Nava/The Signal