The month of January was dedicated as National Human Trafficking Prevention month in 2010, and each year the call to bring awareness and end the demand for human trafficking has become ever greater and stronger across the country.

In observance of this, Broward College’s Social Behavioral Sciences & Human Services Pathway, the Broward College chapter of Project Stay Gold, the Institute of Public Safety, and Alumni & Friends hosted a variety of awareness-raising events in person and online, culminating in a successful 5K Walk-For-Awareness on the morning of Saturday, January 28, at Broward College’s Central Campus. Nearly 300 participants registered for this event, including members of the Broward College community of alumni, staff, students, and friends.

Sibert Ernest is the Broward College student president of Project Stay Gold, an organization with chapters in colleges throughout the country whose mission is to “propose real solutions to confront and abolish human trafficking and modern-day slavery”. Ernest is working towards his A.A. with plans to pursue a degree in medical sonography with a vision to become a doctor in pediatric radiology. “Life is precious; always leave a mark to inspire a precious life in your journey,” he said when asked about the impact of this 5K.

Professor Laura Rambarose is the faculty advisor to Project Stay Gold and she expressed her thoughts about this inaugural action at the College. “The 5K Awareness Walk for Human Trafficking was incredible. We are truly grateful to have had the support of the community, colleagues, and President Haile. Hearing survivor, Cali Q. Simek speak was very inspiring, especially hearing of her journey and everything she had been through. We are hoping that now others will share what they have learned and be aware of resources when it comes to Ending the Demand for human trafficking.”

Earlier in January,  Dr. Victoria Brower was a lead panelist in the Alumni & Friends webinar titled “What you should know about human trafficking and sex trafficking in South Florida.” She had this to say about her experience. “Walking side by side to bring about a change, the atmosphere couldn’t have been more exciting. As an alumna, I couldn’t be prouder of being part of something so compelling and important as bringing awareness and ending the demand for human trafficking.”

We salute the Social Behavioral Sciences & Human Services Pathway who brought this event to life. They helped generate the enthusiasm and passion to attract participants from across the Broward College community. Phillipa Vassell, Executive Assistant tells us,

“Last Saturday, at Broward College’s first 5K awareness to end the demand for human Trafficking, a strong community came together to support an important cause. I especially would like to thank our guest, Cali Q. Simek for sharing her impactful story as a survivor.”

Aligned with this Walk For Awareness was a fundraiser for the Social Behavioral Sciences and Human Services Scholarship at Broward College. We wish to express our deep gratitude to those who made a donation that will benefit future students.

View all of the photographs from this event here.

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