Family Resources, a local nonprofit, will literally shed light on Human Trafficking Awareness Month, in January 2023.

January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, also known as Human Trafficking Awareness Month, according to a Family Resources release. “It is a key time for us all as individuals to educate ourselves about human trafficking and crucially to learn to spot the signs of trafficking,” it says.

Jan. 11th, 2023 is Human Trafficking Awareness Day and one easy way to support this initiative is to wear blue on that day, the release said. Family Resources asks community members and reporters to wear blue to shed light on this tough issue that affects members of our own community.

One of the group of six Malaysian men rescued from a human trafficking syndicate in Myanmar is given a hug upon arrival at Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang on December 21, 2022. The men said they were duped by the syndicate to work in Myanmar with promises of high salaries through job advertisements on social media. (Photo by Arif Kartono / AFP) (Photo by ARIF KARTONO/AFP via Getty Images)

Blue is the color associated with advocates, activists, and survivors of Human Trafficking. The Downtown Davenport Skybridge will be blue on Jan. 11 to observe this day in solidarity with survivors of human trafficking.

Family Resources offers comprehensive survivors services to survivors all across Iowa and Illinois. “We empower survivors through programs such as Comprehensive Sex and Labor Trafficking services because we are committed to our values of safety, integrity, trauma informed care, partnership, and diversity and inclusion,” the organization said.

In 2021 alone, Family Resources responded to 4,992 crisis line calls, 586 served in sheltering and housing services, and 198 served through the Braking Traffik program.

“Together, we can continue our 174-year tradition of supporting successful lives to build strong communities.” the release says.  

Braking Traffik is dedicated to ending human trafficking in Iowa and Illinois. Founded by former Iowa state Senator Maggie Tinsman in 2008, the nonprofit continued to grow under the leadership of Braking Traffik’s executive director, Cathy O’Keeffe.

In April 2016, Braking Traffik merged with Family Resources, allowing the program to further expand services. Braking Traffik provides community outreach and education, legislative advocacy and comprehensive direct services to survivors of human trafficking in Scott, Jackson, Clinton, Muscatine and Louisa counties in Iowa, and Rock Island County in Illinois.

For more information, visit the Family Resources website.