Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Centura College, and Tidewater Tech Receive National Recognition for Anti-Trafficking Advocacy
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – The Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Centura College, and Tidewater Tech family of schools has received the Bronze “Leader in Freedom” award from the national anti-trafficking organization, Safe House Project, for the work carried out by the administration, students, and staff to combat domestic child trafficking.
“Sex trafficking is a major epidemic facing our nation. Over the last three years, our schools have provided hundreds of staff and students as volunteers, providing Safe House Project with thousands of hours of support, but we wanted to do more,” said Joel English, Executive Vice President. “In January our team committed to becoming an activator in the fight against trafficking by using the OnWatch training. We have equipped all of our employees to spot, report, and prevent trafficking where they live, work, and play,” continued English. Today the campuses have trained 90% of their staff, the final step needed to receive the “Leader in Freedom Award.”
Said English, “One of our core objectives is to encourage personal development, interpersonal skills, commitment to community, and personal ethics, so students grow to become not only more skilled professionals but also better people. Through our community and industry partnerships, we are developing relationships with employers in a variety of career fields, and this furthers our reach and commitment to being OnWatch in the communities we serve.”
“Corporations and educational institutions have a place in the fight against trafficking,” said Kristi Wells, Safe House Project’s Chief Executive Officer. “Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Centura College, and Tidewater Tech are leading the way as Leaders in Freedom,” said Wells. “Their efforts to train employees to spot, report, and prevent trafficking, combined with their donations to support victims of trafficking with safe housing, bring a one-two punch to trafficking.”
“Many people are unaware human trafficking is happening in our own backyard and few would know what to do if they did suspect human trafficking. After participating in the training provided by Safe House Project, I feel empowered to spot, report, and prevent trafficking. I appreciate my company for pursuing training and encouraging us all to complete it. We have a responsibility to address the issue of human trafficking in a meaningful way. I am proud to say that I work for a company that is staying true to its core values,” said Ashley Emanuele, Recruiting Coordinator for the schools.
“It’s so encouraging to see corporations engaging in the fight against trafficking,” said Survivor Leader, Sarah Evans, “We all have a duty to eradicate trafficking in our communities and corporations have a large part to play in that. They often have the platform, community engagement, and funding to make a real change. Hats off to Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Centura College, and Tidewater Tech for being among the first to join this fight. They’re making a difference, in their communities and in the lives of survivors like myself.”
About Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Centura College, and Tidewater Tech
Aviation Institute of Maintenance (AIM), Centura College, and Tidewater Tech have been part of an organization dedicated to helping men and women develop careers since 1969. By training working adults in aviation maintenance, healthcare, technology, business, and trades, they connect communities with some of the fastest growing career fields in today’s marketplace. The schools offer professional facilities, knowledgeable instructors, day or evening classes, and job placement assistance. AIM’s campuses are in the following major metro areas: Atlanta, Charlotte, New York, Philadelphia, Dallas, Houston, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Washington, D.C., Kansas City, San Francisco Bay, Orlando, and Norfolk. Centura College and Tidewater Tech are located in Hampton Roads, VA. To learn more, visit www.AviationMaintenance.edu, www.CenturaCollege.edu, and www.tidewatertechtrades.edu.
About Safe House Project
Established in 2017, Safe House Project is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit uniting communities across America to end domestic sex trafficking and restore hope, freedom and a future to every survivor. Safe House Project’s mission is two-fold: increase survivor identification beyond one percent and ensure every survivor has access to safe housing and holistic care by accelerating safe house capacity and development across America. Safe housing and restorative care is critical to ending the cycle of victimization. To learn more about the Safe House Project, visit SafeHouseProject.org.
OnWatch is a joint venture between the Safe House Project and the Malouf Foundation. Initially launched in 2018 OnWatch™ has trained tens of thousands of people to recognize the signs of trafficking and how to respond when they see something. The new version of the free online community-based training, released in September 2020 provides survivor-informed content that will equip communities to spot, report and prevent trafficking where they live, work and play.
Safe House Project Contact:
Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Centura College, Tidewater Tech Contact: