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September- Month of Awareness!

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WOW! We’re gearing up for a huge push to get the word out about ICT S.O.S. and the issue of human trafficking in our city. September will be filled to the brim with opportunities to learn, volunteer, and get involved!

We’ll kick things off with the Race for Freedom 5K Run/Walk on September 8th.

The next couple of weeks we’ll host several documentary screenings. Info about films, times and locations can be found on our events page.

We’ll wrap up the month with a 2-day conference featuring Elizabeth Smart as our keynote speaker. Info and registration forms can be found HERE.

And finally we’re going to Rock The Market! A huge concert in Old Town’s Farm and Art Market square will send the message to our entire city that our kids are NOT for sale!

With so many options- there is something for everyone. Each event will include chances to connect with other passionate people and local agencies working to end trafficking in Wichita!

Help ICT S.O.S. Win $25,000 From State Farm

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ICT S.O.S. was chosen from 3,000 entries to compete in the top 100 Causes for a $25,000 grant from the State Farm Youth Advisory Board. The grant will be chosen by a Facebook voting competition. The top 40 organizations will each receive $25,000 to use toward their community improving cause.

As of Monday April 30th, ICT S.O.S. was in 20th place. You can vote 10 times a day EACH DAY.

Voting ends May 17

 

Winners will be announced May 22nd. Please vote each day and share the link on your Facebook pages. It will take a strong effort all the way through the competition to remain in the top 40!

If we win the grant, ICT S.O.S. will be using it to renovate the houseparent quarters in the Independent Living Program at Carpenter Place. This will also free up 2 additional apartments for young women aged 18-24. Currently the program has 6 apartments. 4 are occupied and there are 4 potential residents coming to tour the remaining 2 this week alone. The need is great and we have a chance to create real change in the lives of at-risk young women in our city!

 

To vote, follow this link: https://www.facebook.com/statefarm/app_376288832400015?app_data=ICT-SOS

T-shirts are available for pre-order!

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Thanks to Peace, Love & T-Shirts, we have our first round of official ICT S.O.S. apparel! Impress your friends with your savvy style and start conversations wherever you go!

Just fill out the handy dandy order form and mail it, along with your payment to:

Jennifer White/ICT S.O.S.
1501 N. Meridian
Wichita, KS 67203

Download the order form here: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/33098983/Shirt%20Order%20Form.pdf

The first batch will be ordered Monday, February 27th. The more we can order at a time, the better deal we get.

If you don’t think your order form and payment will reach us by Monday, shoot an email and let us know it’s on its way and we’ll be sure to add your sizes/designs. info@ictsos.org

Repost this on Twitter, Facebook or your blog and leave a comment below to be entered to win a freebie of your choice of design!

 

 

Meeting this week!

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February’s meeting is this Tuesday, the 21st. (We skipped the 2nd Tuesday this month due to Valentine’s Day)

We’ll meet at 6:00pm at The O.Z. 1157 N. Emporia.

Our speaker this month is Lynn Gilkey of Urban League of Kansas. She’ll be speaking about their mentoring program.

As always, meetings are open to any and all who want to attend!

See you there!

 

So, what’s next?

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Our focus for the last several months has been The OZ. Now that the center is open, what is next for ICT S.O.S.?

Our next event is FREEDOM214: A Night of Worship at Mead’s Corner.

This is an event organized by Kevin Johnson and Aaron Lewis, 2 college students with a heart for this issue. The evening will include music, prayer, video and conversation about human trafficking in Wichita. They will also take up an offering to benefit The OZ. We are also encouraging attendees to bring an item or two off the Target Wishlist for the center.

This will be a great opportunity to meet others in our community who are interested in fighting the exploitation of children in our city.

Our next ICT S.O.S. meeting will be held February 21st at 6pm at The OZ (1157 N.Emporia)

We are turning our focus now to legislative and policy changes, more local awareness and projects to reach potential victims. We have some exciting events on our radar for 2012 and would love all the input we can get from our members.

We are also continuing to work through the process to become an official non-profit. Our Articles of Incorporation have been approved by the Kansas Secretary of State. We’ll be drafting bylaws and selecting a Board of Directors soon.

An easy way to help is to order the necklace designed by The Rusted Chain for us. $10 from the purchase of each one goes directly to ICT S.O.S. to help fund our projects. You can order one here: http://therustedchain.bigcartel.com/product/be-free-charity-necklace

Another great way to help is by encouraging a survivor to “Be Free” by donating a necklace for her to wear as a daily reminder. You can do so by ordering from the above link and having the necklace shipped to Veronica’s Voice in Kansas City. They are a safe haven for survivors and often serve women from the Wichita area as well as KC. To have a necklace shipped there use this address:

Veronica’s Voice
Attn: Kiersten
PO BOX 172472
Kansas City, KS 66117-1472

 Jennifer will speaking about ICT S.O.S. at Gracepoint Church for their Gracepoint Summit on Saturday Jan. 21st.

https://www.facebook.com/ictsos#!/events/281384388586498/

And at City Life Church Sunday morning Jan. 22nd. at 10:30am

 

The OZ (Opportunity Zone) is finished!

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Wow! What an amazing day yesterday was! More than 150 volunteers spent Martin Luther King Day volunteering their time, energy and talents to get the center ready to open for business.

Here are some pictures from the day:

 

 

You can also view these photos and tag yourself in them on the ICT S.O.S. Facebook Page!

The local media was wonderful to embrace this project and to help spread awareness of the problems homeless teenagers face. We’re very blessed to have a community that is stepping up to say this must STOP!

The center opens this Wednesday January 18, 2012 from 3-6pm. They will also hold their first weekly group meeting there Thursday evening. This will be the first time many of the kids will see the center that they have named “The OZ” or Opportunity Zone. Risa summed it up best by explaining that it is, “Where some travelers find their brains, some their courage, others their hearts and they all find a way home.”

I could not be more proud of the work we have done. So many people came together to make this happen for our kids. Contractors, laborers, donors, volunteers and people willing to spread the word or say a prayer. All were equally important!

Thank you!

 

National Human Trafficking Awareness Day 2012

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Today is a national day of awareness. We’re very excited about the progress being made in Kansas. The Attorney General’s office made an announcement today of an expanded task force and plans to toughen laws in Kansas. Read more about it here:

http://blogs.kansas.com/courts/2012/01/11/schmidt-expands-taks-force-to-push-for-stronger-human-trafficking-laws/

The Wichita Eagle has compiled a collection of their coverage of the issue in Wichita as well as the efforts of ICT S.O.S. over the last 10 months. You can view it here: http://www.kansas.com/trafficking/

Another great way to raise awareness is by sporting this awesome necklace:

Image of Be Free (charity) necklace

It’s a great conversation starter and $10 from the sale of each necklace goes to ICT S.O.S. to support our efforts locally.

If you would like to purchase a necklace, visit The Rusted Chain and Beki will hook you up! http://therustedchain.bigcartel.com/product/be-free-charity-necklace

And- if you would like to order one to be sent to a survivor of trafficking right here in Kansas, you can do so by having the order shipped to:

Veronica’s Voice

PO Box 172472

Kansas City, KS 66117

Attn: Kiersten

They have about 25 ladies in their program and I would love to provide each one with this beautiful reminder to “Be Free” of the chains of slavery. I ordered one for myself and one to be sent to Veronica’s Voice. Please consider doing this if you are able!