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June lives in Arizona, yet spends the majority of the year in the yachting industry as a stewardess, deckhand and yoga instructor. This affords her the opportunity to discover new destinations, experience new cultures, and develop lasting friendships with diverse people from around the world. June’s true passion; however, is child advocacy and conservation. She supports a wide-variety of conservation and children’s non-profit organizations through writing, volunteering, and fund raising initiatives.

The Girl and the Golden Leaf is the first book in a series dedicated to humanitarian efforts and the preservation of the world’s natural resources for future generations. To learn more and to get involved, please visit your local non-profit organization or visit:

Conservation:

The Conservation Project International (T-CPI) whose aim is to create an innovative hub to empower young conservationists and researchers around the world to become future leaders in the field: https://tcproject.co.uk/

4 OCEAN:  https://4ocean.com/

Children in Need:

UNICEF: https://www.unicef.org/

Children International: https://www.children.org/

Comfort Cases:  https://www.comfortcases.org/

Helvetas: helvetasusa.org The vision of the Helvetas network is a just world in which all men and women determine the course of their lives in dignity and security, using environmental resources in a sustainable manner.

Please read below for more details and statistics…

 

The Girl and the Golden Leaf touches upon a wide variety of different issues our global society faces today. I would like to specifically address two critical areas of concern: poverty and human trafficking.

On January 11, 2018, Senator John McCain (R-AZ) published a statement during National Slavery and Human Trafficking Awareness Month. These quotes address the current crisis and the need to continue the fight to end Human Trafficking:

We must reaffirm our commitment to eliminating all forms of modern day slavery and human trafficking. These are horrific crimes that undermine the most basic human rights, and target the most vulnerable and at-risk individuals in our society…” “It is our duty to not only raise awareness, but to stop the victimization of all men, women and children.”

An estimated forty million people are enslaved across the world, with profits exceeding $150 billion every year.[1] Evil traffickers prey upon the weakest, most vulnerable, and most isolated: those who are desperately seeking a better life, as they try to escape dire poverty, oppression, war, and conflict. According to David M. Luna, former senior director for national security and diplomacy, International Narcotics and Law Enforcement, US Department of State, women, children, and migrants are particularly at risk as they fall victim to the hands of criminal traffickers through fraud, lured by false promises, coercion, violence, extortion, kidnapping, and eventual enslavement.

David Luna, who is now the president and CEO of Luna Global Networks, captured so beautifully the conviction we must all hold and act upon to end human trafficking:

No person should ever have a price tag attached to their heart and soul nor be restricted, abused, and violated against their physical integrity and free will.[2]

According to the United Nations,[3] globally, more than eight hundred million people are still living in extreme poverty. The Girl and the Golden Leaf takes Tia to the heart-wrenching slums of Buenos Aires. There, she witnesses extreme poverty and hardship suffered by those who happened to be born at this time, in this place.

Anthony Lake, executive director for United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), spoke on the impact of poverty on children:[4]

As we look around the world today, we’re confronted with an uncomfortable but undeniable truth: Millions of children’s lives are blighted, for no other reason than the country, the community, the gender or the circumstances into which they are born. Before they draw their first breath, the life chances of poor and excluded children are often being shaped by inequities. Disadvantage and discrimination against their communities and families will help determine whether they live or die, whether they have a chance to learn and later earn a decent living. Conflicts, crises and climate-related disasters deepen their deprivation and diminish their potential.

Millions of people continue to suffer from poverty, a lack of clean food and water, and brutality at the hands of those who exploit them for personal gain. In every corner of the globe, poverty exists, and it’s up to those of us who are fortunate to be born under favorable circumstances to lend a helping hand as often as possible. Whether it’s financially sponsoring a child, assembling care packages and nutritious meals, or finding new ways to raise awareness, there are countless opportunities to get involved. I have made a commitment to help; will you please join me? It is now our time to make a difference.

[1] International Labour Organization (ILO), Global Estimates of Modern Slavery, 2018.

[2] David M. Luna, “Ending Human Trafficking: Building a Better World and Partnerships for Sustainable Security and Human Dignity,” OECD-APEC Roundtable on Combating Corruption Related to Human Trafficking, Cebu, Philippines, August 27, 2015.

[3] United Nations, “The Millennium Development Goals Report 2015.”

[4] United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), “The State of the World’s Children 2016, A Fair Chance for Every Child,” June 2016.