Date of Award
Doctor of Ministry (DMin)
Holley Clough, DMin
Jason Wellman, DMin
MaryKate Morse, PhD
“Awake, O sleeper, arise from the dead, and Christ will make you aware.” Eph. 5:14
Earlier this year I stopped at a table under a sign reading “January Is Human Trafficking Awareness Month.” The table’s material did awaken me to the scope of human trafficking (global), the amount of money traffickers are making (billions), and where to send money to help fight the problem – but there was little information on being more aware of human trafficking within MY town. A lifetime focus on community safety helped me realize that a high level of awareness of the signs of trafficking occurring within my community directly correlates to its’ safety… and that being awake isn’t enough – being aware is critical! If my community’s ‘trafficking awareness level’ (TAL) is low, the probability of trafficking occurring is high. I also realized that the smaller the scope, the greater the hope for dealing with this ‘hidden crime,’ for at the community level human trafficking is less able to hide.
In the verse from Ephesians 5 Paul pleads with Christians to awaken from their sleep. When we truly wake up, we become aware and this awareness keeps us alert and alive – especially if that awareness includes Jesus Christ as Lord. Similarly, to protect lives in our Avalon community, the Community Awareness Core (CAC) – in partnership with the Avalon Community Church (ACC) – proposes to assess Avalon’s TAL and, if low, raise it by training community members to identify, or ‘see,’ the signs and indicators of trafficking as they occur in daily interactions. When community members ‘see something,’ they’ll be trained to ‘say something’ (report to law officers). This project offers faith-based and civic organizations a grassroots approach to collaborating with law enforcement agencies to keep their communities safe from human trafficking.
Eroen, Ron L., "Discovering & Raising the "Trafficking Awareness Level" (TAL) in Avalon" (2022). Doctor of Ministry. 457.