Organization uses ballons to create awareness of human trafficking

Posted: Tuesday, January 25, 2011 12:02 am

Kristina Dilley, Alligator Contributing Writer

 Students passing through UF’s Plaza of the Americas Monday afternoon saw red balloons being blown up and placed in the grass.

What they were witnessing was an awareness rally called 15 Seconds put together by FIGHT.

FIGHT, which stands for Fighting Injustice and Global Human Trafficking, is an organization that strives to get people to take a stand against human trafficking.

Every 15 seconds, a red balloon was inflated to represent an innocent woman or child being taken into human trafficking.

The organization wanted to present students with an opportunity to learn about the injustice that affects more than 2 million women and children every year.

Jessy John, the event director of FIGHT, first heard about sex trafficking more than three years ago. She said it stirred her to know it was going on, and she wanted to be a part of stopping it.

“It was cool that there was an organization in Gainesville that was doing something about it,” she said.

John said the organization does a lot of events outside of campus, but they wanted to do something to raise awareness to students here because Gainesville has such a large population of students.

“We wanted to stir up conversations with students,” she said. “Bring awareness to them. Let them know that there is women and children being trafficked around the world and we can do something about it.”

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