Continuing Lincoln’s Fight For Freedom Across the Globe — Part 3

The following post is part 3 in a blog series following Callie Hawkins, Associate Director for Programs at President Lincoln’s Cottage, in Southeast Asia on an awareness trip inspired by our current special exhibit, Can You Walk Away?. For more information on Can You Walk Away? and modern slavery in the United States, please visit

This is a guest post written by Students Opposing Slavery, one of the groups joining President Lincoln’s Cottage and Polaris Project on their trip around the globe to raise awareness on human trafficking.

Hello everyone! We met with the International Organization for Migration, The United Nations Inter-Agency Project on Human Trafficking, and MTV EXIT today to hear their views on what can be done in the region of Southeast Asia today. Lots of helpful information. Perhaps most relevant was our discussion with MTV EXIT about how to leverage social media to raise awareness in the field. We will have a follow-up meeting with them tomorrow and will also be meeting with a Student group here in Bangkok to figure out what they have done and had success with. The trip is going well and we will let you know more as the week continues!

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In February 2012, President Lincoln’s Cottage unveiled Can You Walk Away? Modern Slavery: Human Trafficking in the United States. This special exhibit challenges perceptions of slavery in America today and raises awareness of a growing humanitarian crisis. By posing the question, “Can you walk away?” this exhibit inspires people to engage with the modern abolitionist movement and to see that slavery is an ongoing issue that requires big thinking and direction action, just as it did in Lincoln’s time. First Lady Laura Bush endorsed the exhibit, calling it “an invaluable lens through which the public can view our country’s ongoing struggle with slavery — both in the historical context and in present day trafficking. Exhibits like this are evidence of the way historic places can shape the way we live in the present.” Can You Walk Away? was created in partnership with the Polaris Project, the leading NGO in the United States fighting modern-day slavery. The exhibit is schedule to run through August 2013 in the Robert H. Smith Visitor Education Center.

Polaris Project is a leading organization in the global fight against human trafficking and modern-day slavery.  Named after the North Star “Polaris” that guided people escaping slavery along the Underground Railroad, Polaris Project is transforming the way that individuals and communities respond to human trafficking, in the U.S. and globally. By successfully pushing for stronger federal and state laws, operating the National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline (1-888-373-7888), conducting trainings, and providing vital services to victims of trafficking, Polaris Project creates long-term solutions that move our society closer to a world without slavery.  Learn more at

Students Opposing Slavery is a student run organization that is committed to improving the world by raising awareness for human trafficking, a form of modern day slavery where people profit from the control and exploitation of others. For more information visit

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