Since 2010, Anna has been involved with a newly developed and growing network in Europe called the European Freedom Network. They exist to help the body of Christ in Europe work together effectively to prevent and combat human trafficking and sexual exploitation, and to seek the restoration of its victims. The EFN is a venture of the European Evangelical Alliance and includes members from all across Europe who are engaged in many different ways of combating human trafficking and sexual exploitation. These members represent well established ministries to a few individuals who bravely go out into the streets to identify those caught in this terrible problem.
In June, we were part of a consultation for existing and new EFN partners in Bankia Bulgaria. The theme of the conference was “Building a Bridge to Freedom” and it was an intense time of facilitated group work. Sheldon had originally been consulting on this project by helping the EFN Core Team organize and deliver the consultation but during the time in Bulgaria he was also asked to be a co-facilitator. It was an exciting but challenging time as he helped lead seasoned practitioners and ministers through engaging exercises and group work. Anna was involved in capturing the stories of the consultation as well as participating in a working group and caring for Stella, Overall the consultation produced loads of information and from that a big picture started to emerge which shows us where people are working, where there are gaps and where they can be co-operating more.
It was also during this week that we were asked to consider joining the Core Team of the EFN. This team is responsible for coordinating the efforts of the network, facilitating the work of its members and helping to delivery resource, encouragement and support for people doing the work on the ground. It was a huge privilege for us to be invited on the team and so we have accepted, giving a few days a month at this point to serving EFN. We did not think this would be the way we would engage in this issue but God knows how to orchestrate things for his glory. It is a great opportunity for us to connect our PAOC global workers into a larger network of people working in Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation as well as share the stories and raise awareness here in Europe and in Canada.