Sexual abuse entered into my little life when I was five years of age. I can remember huddling under a bus that was parked in our yard with no clothes on. My little arms were wrapped around my legs.
As I have reflected back upon that image I knew that my abuse had gone back even further. Memories at the age of three that had me drinking beer and knowing about sex. I have no idea how I knew but I knew.
I am now 52 years of age and in the years between then and now a lot has happened. Drugs, Alcohol, more Sexual Abuse and then a life spent trying to reprogram a brain that was set on fire at an early age. My father eventually ended up dieing in Federal Prison as a convicted drug dealer and murderer and we even spent five years on the run after he escaped from prison when I was a kid. We went through three name changes as we escaped from Michigan and found our way living in a tent in Colorado, a small apartment with another family in Las Vegas and finally settling down in a 27 feet travel trailer in Miami. My dad was a proud member of the cocaine cowboys that ruled the drug trade in Miami in the late 70's and early 80's and is even featured in a book about homicide. All in all, great things to influence a child. NOT
I share this with you because fighting human sexual trafficking is a lifelong passion for me. I was a pastor and missionary but nothing consumes me as much as helping a child or victim who does not have the ability to fight on their own. People need to be empowered and assisted to get out of the trafficked life and then the victims need to understand that there is hope, healing and renewal for each one NO MATTER what has transpired in their past. There needs to be healing from physical and emotional wounds and for those who were raised in a faith community there even needs to be healing in their faith relationship with God.
I pray that we can make a difference, I strive to make a difference, I am consumed to make a difference and I seek to sacrifice to make a difference.
I know there is hope because I can feel it flowing through my veins and if nothing else...I want to burn the idea of hope, healing and renewal into the brains of everyone who is a victim so that they can move from victim to overcomer. Life has great potential but sometimes we have to fight to get there.
Bikers Against Trafficking.org is an organization that seeks to fight for those who cannot. We seek to make a difference and we give you our word that every penny we raise goes towards fighting against the blight that is blinding our nation and world. Human sexual trafficking happens all around us. There are roughly 100,000 to 300,000 mainly young women and children trafficked into the United States for sexual purposes each year, some 27 million victims around the world. Over 99 Billion dollars is made from sexual trafficking.
Traffickers build up a web of deceit in the mind of the victim, they are first placed in a "seasoning process" where they have to survive in a climate of sheer fear and terror. Their average age is 11-14. There are hundreds of thousands of victims that are United States citizens who are being held as sexual slaves. All around us, in most cities, every State and it does not matter if someone is religious, non-religious, gay, straight or whatever...sexual trafficking affects us all.
Please seek a way to get involved. Either through us, through a local group in your area, but somewhere. Battle this scourge as together we can make a difference. We will be more than happy to speak at your event, school, church, club or wherever we can to make a difference and help people understand.
Dr Patrick J. Nave, "Doc" is the President of Bikers Against Trafficking.org and the owner of Sojourners Recovery and Wellness Center in Lake Mary, Florida. He has a BA in Religion and Communications, an MA in Educational and Developmental Psychology and a Doctoral degree in Marriage and Family Therapy. He has also done extensive graduate work in Clinical Psychology and holds the equivalent of a M.Div. He is an ordained minister and former missionary and is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and a Masters Certified Addiction Professional.
Doc has been invited to speak across the United States, in Japan, the Ukraine, the Netherlands, at the United Nation and in Washington DC. He has presented workshops for the Florida Mental Health Care Association, local churches and other area places and organizations. He is a highly motivated and sought out professional in his field.
Diena Cannavino is the Vice-President of Bikers Against Trafficking.org and the Business Manager/Therapist at Sojourners Recovery and Wellness Center in Lake Mary, Florida. She is currently finishing up her bachelors degree in Psychology and is a Certified Addictions Counselor in the State of Florida.
Diena is a survivor of Human Sexual Trafficking having been sold for sex by her father from the ages of 3 to 17. She managed to overcome the years of abuse and has become an incredible advocate for those battling the scourge of Human Sexual Trafficking. She has spoken on the local news, has been part of a documentary that is being circulated at every college in the State of Florida and has presented at local churches and co-facilitated many of the speaking engagements that Doc has participated in.