Posts Tagged ‘Events’

Nearly a decade ago, Nate handed me a copy of National Geographic and told me I should read the story there about modern-day slavery. It was the first time we’d heard the number 27 million (in reference to the number of modern-day slaves) or the name Kevin Bales (cited as the world’s leading expert).

Tonight Nate and I will get to meet Dr. Bales and hear him speak to the hundreds of people attending The Slave Next Door in Berkeley. For people who haven’t read much about human trafficking, the name Kevin Bales might not mean anything, but for me, it’s like meeting the Michael Jordan of the modern abolitionist movement. Not only is it thanks to Dr. Bales that we learned about the topic in the first place, but his book Disposable People played a large role in convincing us to spend a year of our lives in the Philippines working with victims of trafficking.

Along with Dr. Bales, the keynote speaker, we have an all-star supporting cast. Bay Area trafficking survivor Minh Dang will tell her story, followed by a panel of local experts including Nathan George from Trade As One, Officer Holly Joshi from the Oakland Police Department, and Tashina Manyak from M.I.S.S.S.E.Y. Nate and I are also humbled and grateful to be speaking as well. The evening will end with a fair trade bazaar including artisan chocolate tasting, crafts and gifts, and a chance to meet local heroes fighting trafficking.

Sounds great, right? But we need your help.

If you’re local, please attend! Invite your friends. Tell everyone you know about it. I’ve had the chance to attend and help plan many events on this topic over the past five years, and this is the most exciting one I’ve been a part of. While the topic is grim, there’s a lot of hope to be found in this evening. The message tonight is not that life is depressing, but that there is so much we can do to make a difference. Come to be inspired. Come to make a difference. Every ticket purchase goes toward Samaritana, New Day for Children, and M.I.S.S.S.E.Y.

If you’re not local, I’m asking you to pray today and this evening (the event will take place from 7:00-9:30 p.m.). While it’s not an explicitly Christian event, I believe it is an event that God would love to bless. The Bible is filled with the message that God cares about the oppressed, and this event will benefit the women and children here and around the world who need it most. We have seen firsthand how powerful prayer can be, and know that this event will be a shadow of what it could be without it. Pray that the event will be well-attended. Pray that things will go smoothly for everyone involved. Pray that people will leave the event changed, that they will find it in their hearts to care. Pray that this would be the beginning of something big!

Thank you to everyone who is partnering with us both here in the Bay Area, and around the world.



After Taste for Freedom, our fund-raiser that many of you attended or helped make happen, I said to myself, “Never again!” Event planning is just too stressful for me, since it requires both organization and detail-orientation, two things which I most definitely am not.

And yet here we are again. As you may have read a few months back, Laura had the idea to use her coaching experience to start a fitness program, Super Babae, for the women at Samaritana.  Super Babae is gaining momentum (Nike’s second donation is en route from the States!), and when we were talking to our friend Ryan (who worked in sports marketing and managed events), the idea came up of doing a fund-raising race for Samaritana. (All the Samaritana women will get to run the race and get the t-shirt for free, so we’re encouraging them to train the next few weeks as 3k is still longer than most of them have run.)

June 4 is closing in fast, so we’d appreciate your prayers! So far we have a venue, a few partners, and a water sponsor, so all we need is a few hundred locals to register and it’ll be a smashing success!

— Nate

Because Justice Matters is a San Francisco-based NGO (whom some of you might’ve met at Taste for Freedom last May), and they work to combat modern-day slavery, domestic violence, discrimination against immigrants and economic inequality. They are having a fun Valentine’s Day outreach event, and could use a few volunteers. We hope you might be able to spare a few hours, dollars, or words to help!

— Nate

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Valentine’s Women’s Outreach!

February 12th, BJM is hosting our next women’s outreach event to coincide with trafficking awareness month here in San Francisco. (This is one of many events happening to address the issue of trafficking; for a full list of events click here.)

Saturday February 12th, 10am-noon we will be opening our doors to women and offering free manicures, an individually written Valentines card and a safe place to sit with other women and enjoy coffee and candy!! What better way to gear up for Valentine’s?! The purpose of our outreach day is to create a safe place for women to connect with us for friendship and resources; many who attend these events end up returning for our free weekly nail painting and pursuing referrals and support.  But we need your help to make this day a success! To sign up please e-mail

Volunteer Nail Painters: don’t worry, no experience needed. We do a simple massage, file and paint. You will receive a 101 training from our cosmetologist on staff,

Prayer Team, Coffee Servers, and Friends (people to sit with the women after their manicure and simply talk). All volunteers must arrive at 8:45am for orientation. The doors will close at noon and we ask that volunteers stay for a short 30 min clean-up and debrief.

Personalized Valentine’s Cards: We would like each woman to receive a card for valentines. We’re looking for people to purchase a card (or make one), write an encouraging word, prayer, scripture etc inside and give to us. These cards will be handed to the ladies as they leave. Please DO NO SEAL your cards or give personal contact info. This is an easy way to touch a life. Perhaps your place of worship or small group could get on board. We need 80 cards. (Please refrain from ‘preaching’ or offering ‘challenging’ words in your cards. Notes should be uplifting and hopeful) Cards should be sent or delivered to BJM before Feb 7th. 357 Ellis Street, SF CA 94102.

Candy: If you would like to make a donation of Valentine’s themed candy, it would be appreciated. Women will be invited to stay in a coffee house lounge atmosphere. Candy will be in bowls on tables and women will be allowed to help themselves. Please drop or send donations by Feb 7th to address above.
If you cannot be with us on the day, please consider donating or joining us in prayer. We look forward to partnering and blessing many women this February! With thanks,

Ruthie Kim
Director, Because Justice Matters