Get Out of Bed: The Journey to Feel Safe
You may not be ready for this.
Your eyes open to meet another day. Your only goal today is to get out of bed. And, with good reason.
You see, this is something you have a hard time wrapping your heart around.
How can anyone hurt you, you’re a child?
You Were Too Trusting
You sit on the edge of your bed, the ache to feel safe under the blanket.
You grapple to understand.
You were told to be kind and compassionate.
You were told to be your sister’s keeper.
Why have your sisters failed you, you ask?
Why would relatives put you in the care of complete strangers?
Strangers who are far from kind, far from compassionate, far from keeping you safe.
The Choke Hold of Human Trafficking
As you shift uneasily on the bed, you know there is no blame.
The lack of education, socioeconomic instability and lack of public awareness all contribute to your situation and many minors like you.
According to statistics by the Ark of Hope for Children, the impact of human trafficking and sexual exploitation is profound.
- Human trafficking has surpassed the illegal sale of arms
- Trafficking will surpass the illegal sale of drugs in the next few years
- Drugs are used once, and they are gone. Victims of child trafficking can be used and abused over and over
- A $32 billion-a-year industry, human trafficking is on the rise and is in all 50 states (U.S. Government)
This is a global threat to the humanness of who we are as a race.
Trauma Arrested Your Development
You had a sense something wrong was happening to you. You tried to find a way to explain it, yet still unsure of why this happened.
The reason is the physiology of your brain. Your young brain becomes fully formed when you’re twenty-four years of age.
You wouldn’t have had the ability to process this as a minor. The damaging experience fractured your neurological pathways of your eight-year old brain.
This is why your mental, emotional and physical development becomes a revolving door of shame, low self-esteem and a battle for self-identity.
Your Stupor Spared You Each Day
Your complex trauma is equivalent to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Medical research is showing evidence of PTSD from brainwave scans of minors. The brain patterns are like those of prisoners of war.
Your less than fully formed brain is dealing with an adult level of trauma.
Your brain is frozen, a sensory dulling overtakes your sensibilities.
You become emotionally catatonic as you function, but you aren’t truly present.
Learning to Hear Your Voice
Until now, you didn’t think you could get out of bed. But you do, and you have.
And, if you can find a safe place, would you go?
With Kelly Franklin and her foundation CourageforFreedom, you can find your journey to feel safe.
Kelly Tallon Franklin is the founder of Courage for Freedom, a Canadian-based organization. She educates, trains and certifies front-line and community, service providers on proven strategies and prevention tactics serving vulnerable victims of human trafficking and sexually exploited girls.
Her drive to increase awareness for the support of victims is based on her own backstory. Kelly knows first-hand the effects on minor aged victims human trafficking. She can relate to what girls are involved in right now as she has lived through her own trauma. She sees how broken the current system is. Victims’ voices are not being heard.
Be the Master of Your Own Present
Kelly leverages horse therapy as part of the healing process. The whole idea of using horses is that a horse cannot judge or criticize you.
A horse demands for you to be present. Being in the proximity of horses does something to snap your brain into the moment. A horse is very good at drawing you in. A horse mirrors your soul to be and to feel safe.
The non-verbal communication between you and your horse helps you to learn how to become emotionally strong again. When you can hug, soothe, and be calm, the emotional bond you form gives you space to find trust again.
You get to understand the majestic power of a horse.
The hope of Kelly Franklin is to motivate you to love the sound of your strong voice you know you have.
You Are Not a Commodity
Kelly understands your care needs to be a unilateral issue. Your emotional state must be dealt with at where you are, at your pace. She sees your situation is separate from other types of gender-based violence.
She understands 24-hour trauma survivor support staff in residential facilities is core to your healing.
There is much work to be done to:
- Remove the silos between law enforcement and human trafficking experts,agencies, victims, families, and community
- Train health ,service providers, front line workers, hotel / motel, retail, food and entertainment services, and transportation industries who have exposure to minors like you
- Have open conversations to reduce stigmas against you
- Get communities engaged
She knows you are battling demons, and peer pressure each day.
The phone calls are constant reminders for Kelly of where she has come from. Fighting back tears, voice going soft, when it’s been a hard day, she is reminded an angel offered her hope once.
She is dedicated to supporting girls like you, your dreams and aspirations.
Having Personal Choice Is Power
Kelly encourages you to find that safe person who is listening to you.
She helps you find your power through support first, safety, access to wellness programs and an empowerment path to making decisions that serve only you.
Kelly is also very candid in encouraging your sister’s keepers to fully support you. We must ask each other for forgiveness, do away with jealousy.
At the same time, she and her team of volunteers give you enough information for you to digest, as it’s for your safety.
You must decide, do you take control in this moment, or not…it’s your choice.
Can’t Criminalize the Phone
Most importantly, choice is taken away without you even knowing it.
How could anything bad happen answering a phone?
Criminals have access to young girls like you through social media.How will you know what coercion looks like in a text message?
The big concern is how will this crime change.
The long-term threat is people want to own the solution without acknowledging there are multiple approaches.
How are we going to tackle this and be in front of the issue instead of chasing it?”
Kelly Franklin asks.
Project ONRoute - Will They Stop for Me?
ONRoute is a grass root movement initiated by young survivors. 550,000 travelers pass through OnRoute locations daily. Together, the campaign will provide over 2 million media awareness impressions at all 20 ONroutes in Ontario communities during the month of July 2019.
Ads will educate communities to know human trafficking and what to do.
This is an open invitation for you, your family, friends, colleagues and coworkers to attend and celebrate the campaign finale at a local ONroute location July 30th 9:20am sharp.
You made it out of bed. You now know no one can hurt you anymore.
You understand you are a resilient survivor.
You meet the day with a sense of hope that life can get better.
Support the end of human sex trafficking of minors. Join us on July 30th.
Visit us at Courage for Freedom and RSVP by clicking “join our campaign”
Kelly Franklin is a ground breaker, professional speaker, passionate advocate and inspiring trainer. Her work in community, awareness training both personal and corporate as vision caster and plan enabler inspires groups and individuals through keynotes, breakouts and crowd gatherings.
She is the recipient of multiple National Provincial and Community Awards/Accolades for Community Impact. She is also the Co-Author of a #1 International Best Seller – Dreaming Big Being Bold Inspiring Stories from Trailblazers, Visionaries and Change Makers who are making an impact