All I Want For Christmas

Melissa Watson is a volunteer member of our Board of Directors and serves as our part-time National Director. She lives in Phoenix with her husband Mac.

It’s no secret that Free The Girls is not just my job, it’s a passion. Looking forward to 2015, FTG is excited about the possibility of launching pilot programs in new locations to reach more survivors of sex trafficking, while expanding the services we provide to the women in our existing program locations. We are launching a new education and engagement campaign in 2015 called “Everyday Abolitionist” to make sure we maintain, and increase, our supply of bra inventory from bra drive events.

Simply put, we have lots of exciting things planned for 2015.

As such, in mid-October, our Executive Team and Board of Directors set an ambitious fundraising goal of $30,000 by the end of 2014. I took that goal and challenged my friends and family to dig deep and help us hit that target by December 31.

For me, I asked my husband to make my most expensive gift this year be a year-end donation to FTG. Even better, his employer will match that gift to FTG dollar for dollar. It isn’t a clever gift. It isn’t a sexy gift. But it was the number one gift on my list. Why? Because I don’t NEED anything. Which is quite unlike trafficking survivors who NEED jobs, but who are otherwise unemployable because their experience as slaves robbed them of traditional educational and vocational opportunities while leaving them lifelong burdens such as alcoholism and depression.

After issuing my challenge, a girlfriend told me she talked to her two kids about modern day slavery and how there are women and children who won’t have a Christmas this year. She told them about the women in our program, who work hard selling gently-used bras to make a living and keep their children safe. With her guidance, her children agreed to give up one thing on their Christmas lists and ask Santa to donate that money to Free The Girls. I was humbled by her decision to embrace the spirit of giving by helping our program, I’m not sure I could have done that when I was a child.

So, what will you do? Will you ask your spouse, your children, your extended family, your co-workers, or your Facebook friends to get involved? Will you give a gift in someone’s name? Whatever it is, please join me in helping Free The Girls meet our goal by December 31.

To make a gift in honor of another person, simply include their name and email address in the notes when you checkout on PayPal (or, when paying by credit card, simply email us the information at We’ll take care of the rest and make sure your gift arrives in their email within one business day. Click here to make a donation using our secure, online form.

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