Church to host program on human trafficking


April Vanover’s regular job is part-time supervisor for the Fremont UPS office, but the Tiffin resident devotes her free time to help adult victims of human trafficking.

According to, 27 million people are enslaved in the United States. A member of Restoration Ministries in Tiffin, Vanover has arranged for a program on human trafficking at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Tiffin Mall.

“Our speaker is Nadia Lucchin from Not For Sale. She’s the state director,” Vanover said.

Lucchin had started out on the staff at Rahab’s Hideaway, a Columbus shelter where she and Vanover were working. Shortly after that, Lucchin was named state director of Not For Sale, a non-profit organization of activists based in Montara, Calif.

Lucchin remembered Vanover and agreed to give the talk in Tiffin.

Restoration Ministries also is organizing an “antislavery store” with products made by former trafficking victims. The proceeds are to be used for skills programs to help victims find gainful employment. “Free to Play” T-shirts are to be for sale, as well as jewelry from an organization in Cambodia, and fair-trade soccer balls.

Vanover said soccer balls not made by fair trade companies are made mostly by slave labor. Church members also are donating items to be sold.

The Sisters of St. Francis have invited Vanover to be on the newly-formed advisory board for Clare’s House. She also remains affiliated with Rahab’s Hideaway.

Named for Rahab, the biblical prostitute, the facility opened in 2008 for women ages 18 and older. Vanover said it is the second such shelter to open in Ohio. The first was Second Chance in Toledo, founded by Cecilia Williamson.

Information at states its mission is “to reach and rescue victims of human trafficking.”

Those who seek help receive basic necessities and education to help them find employment and eventually live independently.

As a volunteer, Vanover helps Marlene Carson, the shelter’s founder and director, with a variety of tasks, including counseling, event coordination, ticket sales and public presentations.

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