Karen Lambie felt driven to do something to “give back” to society after retiring from teaching. Her online research into children’s rights issues brought her across the sex trafficking of children. Like so many of the people in our audiences, she was shocked to discover its rampancy in the United States and in her own home state of Georgia. She knew she had to help stop this heinous crime, and her continued search led her to Shared Hope International. Joining the Ambassador of Hope Program, Karen found her calling.
She took her Ambassador role very seriously, especially after learning that the foster children she and her husband, Tom, had in their home were from the highest risk demographic. She wasted no time talking to the director of her Department of Family and Children’s Services which led to an introduction to the Adoptive and Foster Parents Association of Georgia (AFPAG) which rippled into speaking opportunities all over the state of Georgia, including three state conferences.
Karen’s husband, Tom, became an Ambassador because he wanted join her in educating the public and to do whatever he could to help prevent children from becoming victims. Sharing with their family and friends about what they are doing continually resulted in more invitations to host booths at a variety of events.
Karen’s main tactic is to make sure people have her business card and that they know there is no speaker fee. Karen shares hope by not only presenting the signs of trafficking, but by assuring people walk away with excellent tools to prevent trafficking.
Karen’s list of presentations is diverse, from university classes to speaking at a family reunion, and she even hosted a resource table at a “Responsible Dog Ownership” event!
Something fun that she likes to include in her presentation? “One activity that can lighten the mood after the heaviness of introducing the topic is to role play how traffickers may approach a child, young person, or even an adult in public by claiming they are a modeling or acting agent. Asking for a volunteer (male or female) from the audience, I ask them to pretend they are a 13-year-old and shopping in a mall.”
“Approaching the individual and gushing about how beautiful or handsome they are usually gets some laughter. I promise them I can get them into magazines and movies. Then I ask them to come with me to the parking lot where my camera equipment is or hand them a business card and tell them to give me a call. Even though their reactions are often very humorous, the very serious point is made.”
Karen keeps her goals simple: To stay tuned in listening for people that might be interested in having a speaker or where she can host a booth. “For as long as I am able, I will raise my voice against the scourge of child sex trafficking.”
Your voice counts, Karen, more than you’ll ever know because we can’t count how many kids are safer because you shared the signs of trafficking. Thank you for all you do!
We need more Ambassadors to educate their communities on preventing sex trafficking. Apply today!