Unbound raising funds for location in Ukraine as refugees sit vulnerable to human traffickers

Published: May. 4, 2022 at 6:20 PM CDT
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BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - Members from Unbound Bryan - College Station are back home after traveling to Ukraine. The group worked to prevent and educate refugees on human trafficking. Now, they’re running a fundraiser with a $25,000 anonymous donation match that would help put Unbound in Ukraine permanently.

Executive Director, Amanda Buenger, was a part of the third team sent from Unbound who on the ground near the Ukraine and Poland boarder.

“Unbound has been sending teams over for the last month and will continue to have a team throughout May and over the summer and what’s really been amazing to see is the connections and the partnerships that unbound has been able to establish on the ground in Ukraine and Poland and from those established partnerships we’re actually creating a long-term sustainable presence there,” she said.

Buenger says she watched people flee their home country out of desperation, escaping the war. This makes them prime targets for exploitation.

“We were actually part of a situation that was able to intercept a trafficking situation with three women and children where they had legitimately paid somebody and given their passport information to a trafficker in exchange for help across the border and transportation on the other side and we’re able to intercept that situation and prevent those women and children from being trafficked that day. So, it’s very obvious, it’s happening, there’s so much vulnerability,” Buenger said.

Unbound has raised $17,000 of their total goal for the donation match. They have until Friday to raise the funds and receive the match. All of the funds raised will go to their efforts of staying in Ukraine.

Buenger said they need the community’s support in order to reach their goals. This would give people in Ukraine, the same assistance we receive here in the Brazos Valley.

“What we’re doing in Ukraine is the same thing we’re doing right here back home and so we need funds to continue serving survivors of human trafficking,” she said.

Unbound has a website here where donations can be made for their efforts on the ground in Ukraine. The group is trying to reach their goal by Friday. The organization also is in need of donations to continue the work they do here. Buenger said over the past year, their local case load has doubled due to an increased awareness for human trafficking. She said with even more awareness, they expect the caseload to only grow. Donations to support the local branch can be made at anytime.

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