by Olivia Kelley 

Speakers on human trafficking and child soldiers are coming to Trevecca this week as a part of the annual social justice awareness week. The week kicks off with a film forum and panel discussion about child soldiers.

Social Justice awareness week has existed throughout the history of the JV Morsch Center for Social Justice. The purpose, according to the director of the Center, Jamie Casler, is to bring a broad awareness of social justice issues to the student body.

“Child soldiers and human trafficking are invisible social justices,” said Casler. “We don’t see it on the news or in the streets like we used to. A lot of it happens behind closed doors and through the internet.”

Events will be taking place on campus Monday through Thursday of this week. Speakers from International Justice Mission, Rest Stop Ministries, and End Slavery will be sharing with students about human trafficking locally in Nashville and globally. Most events will take place during chapel times, with the exception of an event on Wednesday night. 

Anna Turpin, president of the social justice club, is hosting the Wednesday night event called “Slavery Today: Human trafficking and what you can do about it.” She thinks it will be a good way for students to learn about how they can contribute to the cause. 

“A lot of times when you hear awful things about human rights, you think you can’t do anything about it,” she said. “So I think this will be really helpful.”

Casler said this is an important aspect of what the center for social justice is trying to communicate. 

“We need the body of Christ to come together to solve these complex issues,” he said. “How can [students] use their major God-given talents to address the injustices in our world?”

Turpin hopes these events will not only bring awareness to students about social injustices, but will make them care about them. 

“Human trafficking is an epidemic. We should sympathize with the plight of other people,” she said. “It’s important to be aware of the human rights violations happening around you and its important that you care.”

Social Justice Awareness Week Events:

Community Conversation
When: March 27, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Where: Boone Convocation Center
What: Film Forum and Panel on Child Soldiers and Child Slavery. Two credit chapel. Guest Panel speakers: Luis Quinonez, former child soldier and Rondy Smith, founder of Rest Stop Ministry

Child Soldiers Chapel
When: March 28, 9:30 a.m.
Where: Boone Convocation Center
What: Luis Quinonez will be sharing about his experience as a child soldier. 

Slavery Today: Human Trafficking and what you can do about it
When: March 29, 6-7 p.m. 
Where: McClurkan 200
What: A guest speaker from End Slavery in TN will share about how students can participate in being part of the solution. Pizza and drinks will be provided. 

Chapel: Michelle Conn with International Justice Mission
When: March 30, 9:30 a.m.
Where: Boone Convocation Center
What: Michelle Conn will share in chapel about the girls who have been rescued from the sex trade and their journey toward healing and restoration.