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PACIFIC CREST TRAIL

Post Peace Corps I’m gonna be out on the trails hiking the Pacific Crest Trail—2,653 miles from Mexico to Canada through the beauty of California, Oregon and Washington. I’d been dreaming about this trail before I left for Thailand and non-stop thinking about it since I’ve been here. I can’t wait to spend everyday living out of my pack and becoming bonafide hiker-trash.

Peace Corps Volunteer

I work to empower Thai youth to develop capacity that will prepare them to be healthy, engaged citizens who are catalysts of change in their communities.

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DRESSEMBER
I will be wearing a tie/bow tie during the length of the PCT in order to raise awareness of the anti-human trafficking work my girlfriend is doing and support the awareness of an incredible organization called Dressember.

Donations to Dressember go toward the rescue and restoration of people in slavery across the world.

PCT HIKE
I intend to continue a career in development work post trail which means the next step will be grad school. In order for that to be a feasible option, my goals of hiking the trail must also be realized without going into the red financially. That's where you come in! Working at Peace Corps wages for the last two years hasn’t given me the best opportunity to save so if you’d like to donate to your favorite little world traveler, that’d be incredibly helpful! Anything helps. This money is going to help me live out my dream of taking on this massive adventure, as well as continue my work trying to do good in the world. Donate a little or a lot, but no matter what stay tuned on my Instagram and Youtube! Onwards!
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Peace Corps Volunteer

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When I was growing up, I don't think I knew what human trafficking was. I was too focused on the cute girl across the room, or on who was going to be homecoming king, or what I was going to do Friday night after the football game. I didn't consider the fact that bad things could be happening, I thought,"I live in America, bad things were happening elsewhere." 

The truth is, I've come to learn, human trafficking affects every country and is a threat to everyone. The wealthiest and poorest countries in the world have human trafficking and the terribly sad thing about this plague: no one is talking about it.

 - People are reported to be trafficked from 127 countries and exploited from 137 countries, impacting every continent and every type of economy. 

- 40 MILLION people are victims of modern slavery. This includes 4.8 million persons in forced sexual exploitation, 15 million persons in forced marriage, and 20.2 million persons in forced labor.

- Human Trafficking has been reported in ALL 50 states.  

We NEED change. And so, after hearing from Cassidy about an incredible organization called Dressember that is fighting human trafficking, I jumped onto the opportunity to participate. This organization asks people to wear a dress every day as a “…uniform, the flag of our movement. Dressember is an opportunity to reclaim and reappropriate the dress as a symbol of freedom and power; a flag for the inherent dignity of all people.”

And as a man, how am I supposed to help? 

It is also important for men to be involved (NOTE: understand that there are triggers for women and to be mindful of women’s past experiences in the conversations. We need to be involved, but not to further harm or trigger. Be mindful!). I've spent a lot of time in conversations with my women friends about the poor ways men treat them, or the ways that men communicate with them. Our world has a deep-rooted issue of men mistreating women and feeling they are entitled to something. As adults that are or will raise kids in our world, we need to start a movement of respect between women and men. We need to teach men that women don’t owe us anything. Behaviors like cat-calling, inappropriate touching, or sexual jokes and questions are NOT appropriate (FULL STOP. No excuses.) and we need to create a new norm. It's not just for women to consider these things and how to change them, it's for men. If you’re a man reading this, you have the opportunity to be an example to other men on how to treat women with respect and dignity. Dressember likes to say: #REALMENDon'tBuyWomen #MenBuyFlowersNotWomen If you're a guy, stand up when you see inappropriate behavior. Also, buy the women in your life flowers and then make sure your kids see you do it. 

Cassidy and I have had many conversations about the organization Dressember and the ways it is working to educate on these issues without turning people off. They've come up with the simple, yet effective action of wearing a dress or a tie every day for the month of December in order to "bring awareness and collect donations to end slavery and sex trafficking. For one month with the dress as our flag, we will carve a path to a better future for people everywhere." Watch videos below to see more of what Dressember is all about and then donate to my mom and I's campaign. Thank you! 

DONATE
I will be wearing a tie/bow tie, and my mother (along with her fellow teachers) will be wearing a dress during December in order to raise awareness of the anti-human trafficking work Dressember is doing and to be a small part of a huge problem of modern slavery.

Donations to Dressember go toward the rescue and restoration of people in slavery across the world.