Former football quarterback and humanitarian Tim Tebow has launched a new campaign to help rescue victims of human trafficking.
Tebow previously worked with the Trump administration to fight trafficking.
“This is something that’s near and dear to my heart, even though this is about probably some of the worst stuff you could talk about,” Tebow told Fox News from South Africa.
The Tim Tebow Foundation (TTF) announced the “unKNOWN” initiative on July 30, which is World Day Against Trafficking in Persons. Their goal is to raise $1 million this year “so that the TTF and its partners — ‘a major effort by many amazing groups and people’ — can help free others from pain and horror.”
Behind the scenes from @TimTebow’s 36th birthday campaign shoot! pic.twitter.com/Bpl0bNlphr
— Tim Tebow Foundation (@tebowfoundation) July 27, 2023
Tebow said that the reason its been named “unKNOWN” is “because of CSAM — Child Sexual Abuse Material. And in just one of the law enforcement databases,” added Tebow, “there are at least 50,000 boys and girls whose images of them being abused, tortured, raped — at least 50,000 of these boys and girls are unidentified and their location is unknown.”
The athlete added, “that’s why we have called this ‘unKNOWN.’ Because we believe that every single one of those boys and girls are known to God — and it is worth us doing anything and everything possible so that they’re known, so that they’re located, so that they’re cared for and rescued, so that they can have the love that they deserve.”
“It’s so important that we talk about these things — some things that are very hard to talk about it, but it’s worth it and it’s needed,” Tebow said.
Tebow explained to the network that human trafficking is “estimated to be a $150 billion industry, with some 50 million people trapped in bondage.”
“This is rampant against the world. Boys and girls are not having a childhood,” Tebow said. “They’re being abused. They’re being tortured. There are terrible things that are being done to them.”
Tebow told Fox 35 in 2020 that the reason he became so invested in fighting trafficking is that his father had rescued four girls while traveling.
“The reason why we got into this was because eight years ago my dad was preaching in a remote country and there were four girls that he was next to that were being sold,” Tebow said. “And he took out all the money out of his wallet, which was $1,250, and he bought those four girls. And then he called me and said, ‘I just bought four girls and not really sure what to do now.’ and I said, ‘that’s ok dad. we’ve got your back.”
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