If you’ve ever wondered how far FTS co-founder Kevin Bales will go to end slavery, Sunday’s anti-trafficking concert in Myanmar will tell you.
He’ll give the shirt off his back to spread the word that SLAVERY SUCKS.
In Kevin’s estimation, Jason lacked the proper wardrobe.
Jason describes the experience this week in his online journal:
Moments before taking the stage I ran into Kevin Bales, an economist and hero of mine, whose TED talk introduced modern-day slavery to the social network. I consider Kevin one of the leaders of the ongoing anti-slavery and sustainable-freedom movement and it was seeing him backstage, a long way from California, that I began to experience the important significance of the event. This is a global crisis, and our concert was continuing to bring it into light.
Kevin was wearing a black “slavery sucks” t-shirt and he insisted I wear it during my set. It was already damp and odorous with his sweat from the day’s scorching heat, but I didn’t flinch when he gave it to me. I was honored. He literally took the shirt off his back for me.
For Jason, it was a profound experience. He writes:
Here were 50 thousand attentive people, observing, raising their hands in the air, shouting freedom! They did everything I invited them to do; dance, play and participate…Still, I never turned my attention away from the real issue. I was there as a messenger, helping to spread peace, prevention tools, and protection from the horrors of human trafficking…Anyone can rise to fame and fill an arena. Anyone can go on tour and impress audiences with their unique sound, catchy lyrics or beautiful voice. It happens every season on the latest re-invent of Star Search. But very few get the opportunity to be a first international artist to sing with tens of thousands in a movement to bring an end to human trafficking. I got to do that here in Myanmar. And it was awesome.
You can read more about Jason’s inner journey in Myanmar in his online journal.
Here’s the trailer for the Freedom Awards, which premiered last night on Halogen TV. If you missed it, don’t fret! It’s airing again tonight at 8pm ET.
This awards show will make you laugh, and cry—and want to change the world.
If you’ve never seen the annual Freedom Awards, you have no idea how inspiring it is to join the growing global movement of people who love freedom. Freedom for all. If you’ve seen previous Freedom Awards—well, this edition will knock your socks off!
Each year, Free the Slaves honors courageous heroes who risk their lives to free slaves. During the broadcast, you’ll see an actual rescue caught on videotape. You’ll see breathtaking portraits of slaves and slavery survivors by world renowned photographer Lisa Kristine. You’ll see Grammy-winner Jason Mraz sing with child slavery survivors in Africa.
Award presenters include Oscar-winner Forest Whitaker, actors Demi Moore, Ashton Kutcher, Camilla Belle and Vincent Kartheiser, spiritual leader Michael Bernard Beckwith and CNN.com chief Meredith Artley. The witty Sir Ken Robinson is host. Musical guests include Rickie Byars Beckwith, the Agape International Choirs and Ghanaian reggae star Rocky Dawuni.
The Freedom Rocks after-party picks up where the awards ceremony leaves off. It’s premiering on the Slavery Sucks webpage on January 29th. More music from Jason Mraz and Rocky Dawuni, along with Luc and the Lovingtons and the Makepeace Brothers. Actor Ryan Devlin is host.
Enjoy the show, then visit FreetheSlaves.net to donate. Your continuing support makes it possible for us to help people from slavery to freedom worldwide.
We know what we are doing this Saturday: watching the 2010 Freedom Awards on Halogen TV!
Launched in January 2009, Halogen bills itself as the television network for millennials—the first generation to come of age in the new media era. For millennials, online networking is a natural part of their lives. And they are engaged in social causes. Halogen’s programming is geared toward this audience of young people who strive to “be the change they want to see in the world.”
We see modern-day slavery as the human rights issue of our time. So we are overjoyed that Halogen is dedicating a five hour block of their programming to this issue. Halogen’s Slavery Sucks* broadcast begins at 6pm ET and will play until 11pm. The Freedom Awards will air at 9, followed by Halogen’s own original series on sex trafficking, ‘Tainted Love.’
Check out the Freedom Awards trailer below! And, in honor of Halogen’s Slavery Sucks programming, tell us why YOU think slavery sucks here >>
*”Slavery Sucks” is used with the permission of Free the Slaves.