By Matt Snyder
4,500 people gathered the other night at the Fox Theatre in downtown Atlanta, Georgia. It just wasn’t any crew of 4,500 people though. It was thousands of revolutionaries who are going to change the face of history in Atlanta.
And I’m not just saying that. I was incredibly blessed to be able to attend the premier of Whitestone Motion Pictures’ film The Candy Shop. This 30-minute film is about the commercial sexual exploitation of children, specifically in Atlanta. It runs under the guise of a fairytale, sort of a “Willy Wonka meets the Mafia,” as Brandon McCormick, founder of Whitestone and executive producer of The Candy Shop, put it.
Whitestone partnered with Street Grace, a ministry dedicated to eradicating human trafficking inside of Atlanta (and ultimately throughout the world). The best part is that Brandon announced last night that 100% of the profits from The Candy Shop are going directly to Street Grace.
Folks, that’s going to be a ton of money.
Yet, the most inspiring part of the night wasn’t just the film, nor was it just the speakers. It wasn’t even the fact that we were in the Fox Theatre, which was incredible. The most inspiring part of that night was that there are 4,500 less ignorant people walking the streets.
See, one of the biggest realities I’ve faced since becoming passionate about abolishing human trafficking is that, well, people are ignorant. So many people don’t realize the size of this problem. Here are some quick facts:
- Over 500 under-aged girls are trafficked for commercial sex acts in Atlanta every month.
- 28,000 men purchase sex in Atlanta every month.
- 18,000 of those men are regulars.
Those are just a few facts. Just a few.
What I like is that there are 4,500 people now – every single person with some kind of influence – who has ammunition. They’ve caught the vision. And they’ve caught the vision in one of the biggest cities in the world for the commercial sexual exploitation of children.
I want to encourage you to get involved. Check out the “Stop the Candy Shop” website and view the film when it comes out in December. Exercise influence where you have influence and be an advocate.
It’s as easy as opening your mouth.
Matt currently lives in Gainesville, GA and is traveling overseas in January 2011 to combat the issue of human trafficking with the World Race and Adventures In Missions. You can follow his journey here.