I remember the moment I stepped into the building. The building where everybody was rallying to prepare to walk. It was a flurry of black shirts and faces of every shade and color. The atmosphere was buzzing with determination. The kind of determination that made me acutely aware I was surrounded by individuals who expected this day to matter.

I had seen the posts, I received the emails, and I had made the choice to join, but nothing could have prepared me for what it felt like to be amongst it.

When I read the story of a victim named Anna for the first time, I was overwhelmed that human beings were being bought and sold globally, and I knew I couldn’t remain dormant. But what I didn’t know was that there were thousands of individuals just like me. Thousands of people who had heard the stories, read the statistics, and made a conscious choice to do something about it.

A21 called them abolitionists. People. Everyday people. Who believed they would end slavery.

Here I was, amongst them. I had almost unknowingly engaged with a community of people who had arrived here today to shake the very foundation of slavery. To reach every corner of the globe, one step at a time.

As the leader began to speak vision and passion into the microphone, I could feel the expectation rising. She spoke of a day that exists to turn awareness into action. She explained A21’s vision to outwardly express the inward desire to free every single slave on the planet.

As she painted a picture of thousands of abolitionists walking, just like us, in that very moment, all over the world, I knew we were taking ground. For the first time in my life, I was convinced that I was a part of something so much bigger than myself.

We put tape over our mouths, we laced up our shoes, and we marched. We marched through our city with a silent message that there are millions of slaves, and we won’t stop until everyone is free. It wasn’t just a walk. It was a purpose.

As we made our final turn back toward the venue, I sensed a shift in my heart. A belief in my ability to create a change that I didn’t know I carried two hours earlier.

They had called me an abolitionist. But in that moment, I knew I was an abolitionist. And I am more convinced than ever that we will be the last generation sold.

The new abolitionists are here.

This year on October 14, thousands will be gathering in hundreds of cities around the world to take a stand for the millions of slaves in the world today.

Join the movement. Bring #WalkForFreedom to your city by registering to host a walk today: A21.org/Walk   


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