First Fruit Ministries is a non-profit providing Outreach and Supportive Housing to the homeless population, with a specific focus on victims of commercial sex or labor trafficking. Team members from First Fruit met with Mayor Bill Saffo on Tuesday, January 18th and presented a proclamation to name January as Human Trafficking Awareness and Prevention Month.
This is part of an ongoing effort by First Fruit Ministries to foster collaboration among human trafficking service providers and form a multidisciplinary team of social services, law enforcement, healthcare, and homeless service providers to better serve and swiftly respond to trafficking crises in Wilmington. The Collaboration Against Sex Trafficking (C.A.S.T.), is a community service provided by First Fruit Ministries that nurtures a healthy trafficking response network on the Carolina Coast through system mapping, and fostering collaboration between providers. CAST offers a system map of resources and gaps in services, connects providers to each other for training and support, assesses the client experience of the trafficking response system, and nurtures provider relationships through networking events and resource navigation tools. First Fruit Ministries staff hopes strengthening the relationship with the Mayor’s office will lead to strengthened commitment from community leaders to fight human trafficking in Wilmington.
First Fruit Ministries believes this is an important first step in bringing awareness to the critical issue of human trafficking in Wilmington and providing holistic solutions at a system-wide level to serve victims and survivors in their recovery.
WHEREAS, Human Trafficking is the fastest growing criminal industry in the world today; and
WHEREAS, North Carolina is one of the top ten states for trafficking in the country; and Wilmington is ranked number four city in North Carolina; and
WHEREAS, It is imperative that we educate our communities, families, and young people to learn the signs and risks of predators who use coercion and manipulation to force others into labor or sex trafficking; and
WHEREAS, The city of Wilmington is committed to protecting people vulnerable to human trafficking through prevention, prosecution, and partnership;
NOW, THEREFORE, be it resolved that January of every year be proclaimed
HUMAN TRAFFICKING AWARENESS AND PREVENTION MONTH