Human trafficking is one of the fastest growing criminal enterprises worldwide. Each year an estimated 1,078 Ohio born children are trafficked including underage victims currently residing in Summit County.

In response to this form of modern-day slavery, a grant from the Women's Endowment Fund of the Akron Community Foundation is allowing The Summit County Collaborative Against Human Trafficking to host a S.O.A.P. (Save Our Adolescents from Prostitution) event.

The S.O.A.P. project strives to educate Summit County hotel and motel managers about saving trafficked children who are often hidden in plain sight. The collaborative is partnering with Be Free Dayton, a nonprofit organization, and Teresa Flores, an author, advocate and survivor, who will provide an in-depth training for all volunteers willing to approach hotel managers about maintaining a traffic free hotel.

Adult volunteers are needed to distribute bars of soap to specified Summit County hotel managers. Adults, placed in teams of four, will be asked to encourage hotel managers to replace current bars of soap, with the new bars labeled with the National Human Trafficking Hotline phone number.

The event is being held at the Oasis Facility, 847 Crouse St., Akron on July 27 at 1 p.m. Register at

The mission of the Summit County Collaborative Against Human Trafficking is to increase our community's knowledge of human trafficking through educational efforts to ensure individuals are prepared to recognize and properly assist victims of human trafficking.

For additional information, contact Belinda Wing at