At the helm of PROJECT FUTURES is 25 year-old Filipina Australian Stephanie Lorenzo, a marketing professional who was inspired to take action against the illegal sex trade exposed in the book 'Road of Lost Innocence' by its author, trafficking survivor Somaly Mam. Since its establishment, PROJECT FUTURES has united a small army of Generation Y volunteers across Australia and the US who share the aspiration of living in a world emancipated from all forms of modern-day slavery.
Sex trafficking is the second largest form of modern day slavery and second most profitable organised crime around the globe. There are approximately 27 million people trapped as modern day slaves, most have been deceived into their plight by the promise of stable employment and others, sold by their own families or friends.
Over two million young women are sold to brothels annually where they are forced into a life of prostitution, violence and extreme poverty. Attempts to escape, are met with torture or death.
Girls count. The lottery of birth should no longer determine their value or hinder their access to fundamental needs, rights or equal opportunity. The PROJECT FUTURES team recognise that trafficking is a widespread crisis that must be stopped and are working together to liberate victims while empowering survivors to sustain lives of dignity.
On May 17, PROJECT FUTURES picked up more momentum, making its official mark in the US as its partnership with the Somaly Mam Foundation was celebrated with a launch party at the Bowery Hotel in New York, hosted by Seth Meyers of Saturday Night Live and guest of honour Somaly Mam.
Nastasha Tupas is a journalist focused on philanthropic advocacy and multicultural affairs. She is an Australian correspondent for ABS-CBN online and blogger for PROJECT FUTURES Global. Nastasha was a reporter for the Balitang Australia TV programme broadcasted on The Filipino Channel (TFC).