Freedom 4/24: Internships – Investing in Your Future

Freedom 4/24 Blog

G3 offers a variety of different educational paths for students with a passion to help others. From human services credentials to public safety certifications, there are so many ways to take a leap and start making real, positive changes in the world. 

Speaking of making a positive change – that’s exactly what Freedom 4/24 is committed to doing. The Lynchburg-based nonprofit educates individuals to prevent and end sexual exploitation and trafficking locally and globally. 

Both Joy Cover, President of Freedom 4/24, and Sarah Bushnell, Administrative Coordinator have personal connections to this work and agree that their jobs require a certain level of passion and calling.

Although Freedom 4/24 is not currently hiring, they are always on the search for interns to help support their efforts in the community and beyond. 

Here is how you can get involved. 

Can you tell us about Freedom 4/24? 

When it comes to human trafficking, there are hundreds of misconceptions presented on social media, television and blockbuster films. 

Most people would probably tell you that human trafficking victims are only foreign-born individuals without money or that trafficking doesn’t happen in the United States. 

These myths can’t be further from the truth and thanks to Freedom 4/24, more people are understanding that. 

Sarah: We are a nonprofit based in Lynchburg, VA. and we fight human trafficking and sexual exploitation both locally and globally. We provide awareness and prevention education and expand the restoration work of our partners in Ecuador, India, Thailand, Uganda and the U.S. 

The team works to educate the local community about human trafficking and has dedicated themselves to stopping the crisis before it even begins. 

Joy: The work is an uphill battle. We started our focused prevention education for youth in 2018 but the challenge is that often schools and parents don’t want to talk about human trafficking and don’t think it exists in their communities. So we determined that we wanted to reach not only schools but any youth-based entity. We’ll go to community centers, churches, youth groups – anywhere kids are we are available to provide prevention education. 

What does hiring look like at your company? What positions are you looking for?

Sarah: All of our staff positions are currently filled but every year we offer semester-long internships. We determine the type of interns we need based on the projects we are currently working on. Between grant writing, program coordination, sustainable nonprofit work and our remote “basic” communications internships, we really do have something for everyone. We’ve even considered year-long positions. 

Joy: We typically have 6-8 interns per semester from a variety of different backgrounds. We see a lot of interns studying communications, health care, education and social work but all are welcome.

How has your organization worked with your local community college in the past?

Joy: In the past, we’ve promoted our internships on a couple of different platforms (website and social media) and have traditionally worked with local universities. However, we now recognize the number of resources available at Central Virginia Community College (CVCC) right here in Lynchburg, and we’d love to provide opportunities for education and learning through internships. 

Being able to partner with our local community college is so valuable and allows us to place qualified candidates in vital roles. 

What makes an ideal candidate for your open positions?

Sarah: You must be able to think critically and on your feet! Sometimes our plan for the day gets dramatically altered and we need people who can be flexible and take the initiative when needed. 

What advice would you give to students interested in this work?

Joy: If you have a passion even if you aren’t getting paid for it, invest in it and you’ll never know how that will grow and what that will turn into later on. Maybe you can volunteer or intern, or maybe you’ll be a president of an organization one day. 

Freedom 4/24 is a supporter of Virginia’s Community Colleges through the G3 Business Ambassador program. If you think you’re a fit for a role at Freedom 4/24, visit its website to learn more.

To report suspected human trafficking to Federal law enforcement please call 1-866-347-2423. 

To get help from the National Human Trafficking Hotline call 1-888-373-7888 or text HELP or INFO to BeFree (233733). 

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