Area runners and walkers can help save girls and women victimized by sex trafficking by taking part in the RESCUE RUN 5K run/walk on Oct. 13 at the Terry Trueblood Reserve Area by Sand Lake in Iowa City. The race is organized by Lillian Meyers, who graduated from Gladbrook-Reinbeck High School in 2010 and now attends the University of Iowa College of Nursing.
The Rescue Run seeks to unite people, organizations and businesses toward the common cause of ending human trafficking. According to the United Nations, about 2.5 million people from 127 countries are in some form of forced servitude, including sexual exploitation.
Helping to combat that is Rapha House, a Christian organization that seeks to love and help girls and women who have been victimized by the sex trafficking trade in Southeast Asia, the United States, and soon, Haiti.
"They seek to 'love, rescue, and heal' women and children affected by sex trafficking," said Lillian Meyers, the head organizer of the Rescue Run who has worked with Rapha House. "Their safe houses are equipped with counselors, social workers, and educators to provide these young women with the possibility of a very bright future. For many of these victims, it is the first time they have had a purpose and been loved by parent figures."
There is a cost per month to sponsor a child through Rapha House, whose name comes from the Hebrew word for "healing." Children and women who have been victimized are helped through the organization by being provided a place to live, receiving an education and learning a trade away from the sex industry.
The cost for pre-registration for the run at the Terry Trueblood Reserve Area, 4213 SE Sand Road in Iowa City, is per runner, with all proceeds benefiting Rapha House and their efforts to end human trafficking in Iowa, the United States and beyond. The cost includes a T-shirt, with prizes given to the top runners. Registration on race day begins at 8 a.m. To register, donate, or volunteer please go to the website: www.therescuerun.blogspot.com.