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Be the Change: Trekking Against Trafficking

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Published: Oct. 28, 2018 at 5:25 PM MDT
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It's a heinous but multi-billion dollar industry: human trafficking.

We introduce you to man who's trying to fight this issue one footstep at a time.

A man from Hawaii just finished hiking the Appalachian Trail for charity.

Micah Pexa completed his 2,190.9 mile long journey along the Appalachian Trail on October 21st.

Through this hike, he raised more than 19 thousand dollars for non-governmental organization

.

Micah Pexa says, "The way they choose to fight human trafficking is to preemptively pull young girls out of, at risk-young girls out of poor village situations. They bring them into a safe house in the city where they can live safely. They pay to send them to school all the way through university."

Pexa taught English in Thailand, and he says he had to take action when the issue of human trafficking hit too close to home.

Micah Pexa says, "Female friends that I knew, that I worked with, had a couple of them go into the sex industry in Thailand and it was just very bothersome. When it became personal, when I actually knew somebody who was being affected directly that way. It really bothered me."

Pexa says a lot of the girls up in the northern hill tribes of Thailand are the most susceptible to sex trafficking.

Micah Pexa says, "They're low-hanging fruit. They're the most vulnerable population. They're the easiest to pluck for human traffickers. With the lack of education and the lack of identity, national identity, it's tough for them."

Some girls don't have a national identity, which is a huge problem.

Some of them are immigrants who came across from Burma or Laos.

Others were actually born in Thailand, but if they weren't born in a Thai hospital, they don't have any paperwork to prove who they are.

Micah Pexa says, "Without that paperwork, they don't have any Thai nationality. They're not in Burma so they don't have their Burmese nationality. They just have a lack of everything: being able to get a job, go to school, healthcare, all those basic needs."

Pexa hopes Friends of Thai Daughters continues to prevent child trafficking, but says it's devastating to know people go to these lengths to survive.

Micah Pexa says, "It's heartbreaking. It's heartbreaking that people are that desperate and that poor."

Pexa says he'll keep the

page open for a few more months.

If you'd like to donate or check out his journey, go to

.

Do you know someone who would be great for Be the Change?

If so, send an email to katrinal@blackhillsfox.com.