ST. GEORGE — The hugely popular rapper James the Mormon will be in St. George Saturday performing for a benefit concert in support of an organization working with victims of human trafficking in Southern Utah and around the globe.
James the Mormon, whose first full-length album, “We Came to Play,” debuted in the iTunes Top 5 for hip-hop albums, is partnering with Global Education Philanthropists to put on the concert at Amira Resort, 1871 W. Canyon View Drive, in St. George at 7 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $15, and kids under 10 are free admission.
Global Education Philanthropists, or GobalEP, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit based in St. George that serves communities in need. Recent efforts have included humanitarian excursions to the Caribbean, helping with hurricane relief in Puerto Rico and offering aid to children in Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
The organization also specializes in providing aftercare to victims of human trafficking, and the children they serve in this capacity are not limited to victims in the Caribbean, but also in the U.S. – even in Southern Utah.
“Unfortunately, in Utah we’re just not exposed enough to human trafficking to understand it as much,” Cammy Bowker said. “Very unfortunately, it’s growing rapidly in Utah.”
Bowker, an educator of 12 years and the founder of GobalEP, has worked with numerous children involved in sex trafficking.
Incidents of trafficking have become much more common in Utah in recent years, Bowker said; a problem exacerbated by Interstate 15, which runs from near the U.S.-Mexico Border to Canada, transecting the state.
“It’s super bad in Southern Utah because we’re right by Vegas,” she said, “so I-15 becomes a pipeline for transporting kids.”
“I think most of us don’t want to think about it,” Bowker said. “Well, now the whole world has access to our kids because of their cellphones.”
In addition to raising awareness to the issue of human trafficking, the concert’s proceeds will benefit agencies based in Southern Utah that go undercover and rescue kids from trafficking.
A major part of that effort for GlobalEP involves putting together aftercare backpacks for kids who are rescued from trafficking situations, which include essential hygiene supplies and clothing.
Concertgoers are encouraged to bring supplies or monetary contributions to be donated at the door. Donated items will be given directly to victims by volunteers at the time of rescue or during aftercare.
Needed aftercare supplies
- Mini bottles of shampoo, conditioner, soap, lotion and hand-sanitizer.
- Toothbrushes and toothpaste.
- Flip-flop sandals.
- Small candies and treats.
Aiding traffic victims is just one of GobalEP’s missions, and the organization is looking for volunteers to help rebuild schools, provide medical and dental aid and educational instruction for teachers in impoverished countries.
“A lot of our aid goes to educating those that we serve in an effort to empower them,” Bowker said.
- What: Anti-trafficking Fundraiser featuring James the Mormon.
- When: Saturday, June 16, at 7 p.m.
- Where: Amira Resort, 1871 W. Canyon View Drive, St. George.
- Cost: Tickets are $15 and can be purchased at the door or online. Kids under 10 are free admission. Donations for aftercare kits in the form of money or supplies will also be accepted at the door.
Written by JOSEPH WITHAM, St. George News.
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