We have been meeting for about 2 years now and are actually getting some good direction, action items, and see where we can be effective as a group of volunteers. Since the time we have been meeting we have had a fluctuation of folks in and out of our group. At one point we actually did have 4-5 men who were coming regularly, but most of them have moved away :(
A little while ago I had a conversation with a friend of mine who asked me who was at the S.A.F.E. walk/run. My answer, mostly college students, a few families, mostly women, and several men. However, most of the people who came to our table were women.
*There was the guy who wore a t-shirt that said "Ending abuse one step at a time"... he ran the 5K barefoot! That was awesome :)
Anyways, my friend replied, "Its really hard to get men involved."
After that conversation I started evaluating the different meetings and events that I have been involved with...
- Jubilee meetings: Currently, no men
- RIPPLE meeting: (Group of NC service providers who are working on a plan to combat trafficking in the state)... at the meeting yesterday, 3 men, 15-20 women
- S.A.F.E. Walk/Run: I would say 75% women
- Conferences/Seminars: 80% women
- Hope House Workers/Staff: Only 1 man
- Hands that Heal Training: 3 men, 40 women
Okay, so I will stop there, but my point is... Whatever we do to support survivors of trafficking is wonderful and necessary, but without combating demand and changing the stereotypes that are out there, there will always be more victims. In order to change anything in the trafficking world I think more men need to be involved.
If you are a male, what would keep you from being involved in work towards ending trafficking?
*Side Note: David Batstone with the Not For Sale campaign is very effective and it is exciting to this organization thrive.
What do we need to do to appeal to men?