Human trafficking is a global issue, but in South Africa specifically, an estimated one in every 833 women or kids is raped; though, UNICEF reports say the real number is higher because a ton of rape cases go unreported. Many affected are exposed to HIV/AIDs and/or lost their parents and roam the dangerous streets for “Safe Houses,” so Renaissance Movement Music (RMM) is looking to build one.
“Our [recent] trip to South Africa, meeting the youth face to face and hearing of their vulnerability to sex trafficking due to their orphaned status because of HIV/AIDS and poverty broke our hearts,” Legin said. “[We] all come from broken homes in America and understand how that leaves you susceptible to cultural dangers and influences, but we were face to face with it in Pretoria. After arriving back home and realizing how prevalent sex trafficking was even in our community here as well, we were compelled to action.”
As a response to what they experienced and learned about human trafficking in South Africa, RMM decided to create the Safe House project, which will be an encouraging album dedicated to trafficking awareness, where 100 percent of proceeds will go towards building a safe house.
“The overarching theme of the album is ‘Everybody Needs a Safe House.’ We have songs specifically about the youth in South Africa, such as ‘Safe House,’ ‘Know What It’s Like,’ and ‘Stand,’ but we also have songs pointing to our own need for a safe house such as ‘Welcome’ and ‘Felony,’ Legin said. “[We] wanted something everyone can relate to no matter where they are. We hope Safe House raises awareness about trafficking and encourages people to respond, but we didn’t want an album where that’s the only thing we talked about either. So we are hoping we strategically balanced it all well.”
The Safe House album release date is TBD, but RMM asks for prayers “for the God of Justice to protect children” and support of the album when it drops, so that victims in South Africa can benefit completely.
“The more this album charts and gets on playlists, the more awareness for the cause of building the safe house, raising awareness and inspiring people that each of our lives can have a significant impact for good if we would just step out of or comfort zones … So many organizations are fighting for this – IJM, A21, Thorn and many others. Maybe you’re supposed to partner with, join or start something. Maybe it’s related to fighting trafficking, maybe it’s not. I believe whatever it is for the cause of justice that lines up with Christ is a call from God. So find that. And go do it,” Legin said. “The contribution you think is small is infinitely more significant that you can fathom.”
RMM’s proposed safe house will provide housing for 8-10 children at a time. Kerus-trained staff will manage the home and also work on finding permanent placement for kids that come through the house. In addition to the needs of kids being met, the project will also create construction jobs in the community for local contractors.
For more info, visit safehouseproject.org.