For Immediate Release (Conifer, CO)— Recent headlines have brought awareness to human trafficking, but Dr. Jeff Brodsky, founder of Joy International, has been living totally barefoot since July 2010 to do the same. Both domestically and internationally, Brodsky has gone barefoot in solidarity with impoverished and trafficked children. Most of the time, he speaks to adults about the staggering statistics of child sex trafficking, but in his first children's book entitled "Why Are You Barefoot?," Brodsky seeks to educate elementary children about the human trafficking epidemic. The book is based on an actual presentation Brodsky gave in person to a school full of children.
Human trafficking has overtaken arms trafficking to become the second-largest black-market industry behind drug-running. It is also the fastest-growing global industry. According to a recent study funded by the Department of Justice, the average age of young girls forced into the sex trade in America is approximately sixteen years old. Though estimates vary, as many as 21,000 child sex slaves, or children who are trafficked, may exist in the United States alone. According to the FBI, girls that are trafficked for sex have an average lifespan of 5-7 years, typically dying of disease, suicide or murder. It was these facts, along with an encounter at a garbage dump in Cambodia, that first motivated Brodsky to begin his barefoot journey which is chronicled in his memoir, “The Least of These: One Man’s Remarkable Journey in the Fight against Child Trafficking.”
Brodsky and his team have rescued thousands of children from sex trafficking—some as young as four-years-old— as well as conducted various undercover operations to aid law enforcement. The efforts of Joy International have helped to move Cambodia from a Tier 3 country (no efforts against trafficking) to a Tier 2. The U.S. is considered Tier 1 due to its aggressive laws and enforcement against trafficking. Joy International employs a Director of Global Police Training and Tactical Operations who was trained Special Forces Anti-Human Trafficking Police and SWAT teams. Their training techniques for airport personnel to spot potential human traffickers recently resulted in the rescue of a 9-year-old in the parking lot of an Alaskan airport.
A few years ago, a youth group in Ohio where Brodsky spoke organized a fundraiser called The Barefoot Mile which has since been embraced by groups, churches and organizations around the globe. Brodsky says these events have offered communities a chance to stand with him in solidarity with victims of human trafficking.
REVIEW by LAWonder10:
This Children's book is a well-illustrated story of a delicate subject matter. It is written very simply and delicately that all children can read or listen to it without becoming upset with the content.
This is a real problem in society and children need to be aware of the dangers in the world without becoming fearful. This approach has the impact of awareness, yet, is "mellowed down" so it won't upset a child.
This book, also, offers suggestions for all to be able to aid in this battle against the evils of human trafficking. It is highly recommended for Summer reading programs, Book Clubs and to parents and educators to include in their curriculum.
It seemed to end a little abruptly, but was very well-written.
I offer a Four and a Half Stars rating.
This was gifted me with no suggestion of a positive review. This is my honest review.
About Dr. Jeff Brodsky:
Dr. Jeff Brodsky is the founder of Joy International, a non-profit organization which exists to be involved in, or help to coordinate, the rescue, restoration, reintegration, and prevention of the commercial sexual exploitation of children, teens, and young women, both domestically and internationally. For over 37 years, to raise funds and awareness, he has performed as Snuggles the Clown, ridden a bicycle solo from California to New York City, led ten, 101-mile walks across Death Valley, and spoken in 50 nations. He and his wife, Gail, live in the foothills above Denver, Colorado and have three children and eight grandchildren. For more information, visit http://www.joy.org or http://www.thebarefootmile.org.
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