Feb. 2, 2019
The 22nd Annual Evening of Hope Gala raised $579,000 for StolenYouth.
Seattle Hotel Association’s 22nd Annual “Evening of Hope” gala was Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019, at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel.
To see more of this year’s photos click here.
StolenYouth is a Seattle-based non-profit committed to ending child sex trafficking in Washington state while supporting and empowering those who have been affected by this unimaginable abuse. Founded in 2012, we inspire action, fundraise, build and invest in coalitions to dismantle the marketplace exploiting children for sex. Our work began with raising funds for service providers that offer sex-trafficked youth vital support such as counseling, stable housing, and access to education. Over the past six years, we’ve evolved to become the convener, funder, and architect of Seattle’s movement to eradicate child sex trafficking, increasing awareness and action within the courts, law enforcement, education system, social services, and private sector. We have helped to change the conversation in our community around the commercial sexual exploitation of children, shifting the perception of sex-trafficked youth from criminals to victims. Our innovative coalition brings together the strengths of awareness building, direct service, policy development, advocacy, and the public sector to target critical aspects of this issue from prevention and demand reduction to survivor support services. We aim to deepen the community’s understanding of the devastating and often unseen issue of child sex trafficking and expand our victim-centered response to this scourge. Our motivation is simple: No child should be bought or sold for sex.
StolenYouth Honoree Bio
Our journey started with the award-winning book SOLD, by Patricia McCormick, that tells the story of a Nepali girl trafficked into the brothels of India. Inspired by what we learned from the book, a group of us went to India to visit the non-governmental organizations (NGOs) doing the hard work on the ground. There, we discovered that under the direst of circumstances and with the humblest of resources, NGOs were making a difference in the lives of these girls.
Upon our return, we realized that we have a horrific problem right here in our own backyard. A recent study identified that Seattle has one of the top twenty worst records for the sexual exploitation of children in the United. This was our call to action, and StolenYouth was born. If a tiny group of people in India can make a difference with the humblest amount of resources, then we realized that must be able to effectively deal with this problem here where we have so much. With a strong coalition and a caring community, we’ve been able to intervene and give the victims and survivors of commercial sexual exploitation a voice, and a future.
Thank you to all of the sponsors and patrons for giving so generously and
for making this evening one of the Seattle Hotel Association’s most successful auctions to date!