by Anne Halliwell
This holiday season, Minnesotans can add a victim of sex trafficking to their gift list. Mayo Clinic partnered with The Link, a nonprofit that fights poverty and crime, including sex trafficking and exploitation, to create the Rise Up gift registry for victims of sex trafficking. The registry includes necessities such as clothing, winter coats, pillows and blankets. The Link will distribute the items purchased through the online registry. Arne Graff, a doctor at Mayo Clinic who works with victims of child abuse and sexual abuse, said patients who have been sex trafficked are harder to treat than car crash victims. "This population group has got so many things going on, between infectious disease risk, lack of education," Graff said.
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Context: As game day approaches, Mayo Clinic and The Link have teamed up to announce the launch of RiseUpGifts.org as part of an effort to raise awareness about sex trafficking and inspire people to make a difference by helping victims who have been trafficked. The Link is a Minneapolis-based nonprofit dedicated to helping youth and families overcome the effects of poverty and social injustice, including victims of sexual exploitation and sex trafficking. Through the initiative with The Link, Mayo is offering an online gift registry, a site for people to purchase a gift of a daily necessity that will help victims of sex trafficking. A sampling of gift items includes socks, winter coats, basic clothing and blankets. “This initiative has the opportunity to change the path of a victim’s life," says Arne Graff, M.D., medical director of the Mayo Clinic Child and Family Advocacy Center. "Many of these items may seem minor, but to someone trying to escape sex trafficking, they may be necessary for survival. When victims are rescued, they often don’t have any belongings except the clothes on their back. By offering support with these gifts, it allows victims to feel a sense of hope and to potentially become a survivor.” More information can be found on Mayo Clinic News Network.