Elizabeth Smart, World Renowned Child Advocate, Joins Modern-Day Abolitionists to Fight Child Sex Slavery

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Elizabeth Smart will speak at a fundraising gala for Operation Underground Railroad, an organization founded by former CIA and Homeland Security agent, Tim Ballard.

Operation Underground Railroad (OUR), a non-profit organization dedicated to the rescue of kidnapped children from sex slavery worldwide, today announced that child advocate Elizabeth Smart, who at age 14 was kidnapped into child sex slavery, has joined OUR as a keynote speaker at a dinner gala hosted by ABC-7 at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Los Angeles, CA on October 17, 2014.

Smart will be speaking about her own ordeal, as well as her experiences with OUR. The gala will include a VIP reception and event where guests will meet Elizabeth Smart, her father, Ed Smart, and OUR founder, Timothy Ballard. Other OUR ambassadors, such as Chelsea Hightower, from Dancing with the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance, and Brooke White, songwriter and actress, will also be in attendance.

Guests will also view footage from The Abolitionists, a documentary feature film by Gerald R. Molen, academy award winning producer of Schindler’s List and Jurassic Park, set for release in 2015. This documentary exposes the $32 billion dollar child sex trafficking business worldwide and follows OUR’s rescue missions.

The gala is an event for supporters and guests to learn more about OUR’s work to rescue children from sex slavery and bring their traffickers to justice.

"Events such as this will have a huge impact on our rescue efforts all over the world because they educate the public about the widespread nature of child slavery and raise our collective consciences of how we combat and eradicate this evil, as well as help us raise the necessary funds to make these rescues possible" said Tim Ballard, OUR's founder and CEO.

In addition to an exclusive VIP reception, former government operative, author, and OUR Founder, Tim Ballard, will share personal experiences concerning his work in this field as a former CIA and Homeland Security agent and OUR rescue team leader, where he rescued children from harm and brought them to safety. Mr. Ballard spent more than a decade as an undercover agent for both the CIA and Homeland Security, where he fought terrorism and Internet crimes against children. He is known nationally for inspiring audiences as a public speaker.

The gala will feature music by Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis. The entire evening will be hosted by Malcom Jarmal Warner, Emmy nominated actor and director,

The Operation Underground Railroad Gala will take place on Friday, October 17, 2014, starting at 6:30 P.M. at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Los Angeles. Tickets for the gala may be purchased at http://www.ourrescue.org/events. For more information regarding the gala, please contact Emily Evans at (310) 903-0961 or Emily(at)ourrescue(dot)org.

About Operation Underground Railroad

About Operation Underground Railroad: Operation Underground Railroad (OUR) is a non-profit organization that rescues kidnapped children from slavery. OUR rescue teams are comprised of highly skilled ex-Navy Seal, CIA and other operatives. These teams work in conjunction with and in full cooperation with local police forces and governments to liberate children around the world.

The original Underground Railroad was a network that existed in nineteenth century America to liberate African slaves. Today, slavery has a new face: the face of an innocent child. Slavery’s victims today include nearly two million precious children throughout the world. They are slaves, exploited for sex. The symbol of the underground railroad shines through the darkness that surround these poor children and offers hope and freedom to children that are abused daily. Thousands of these children are imported every year from third world countries to developed countries, such as the United States and Canada. Operation Underground Railroad can save and extract them. This is its mission! OUR rescues these children and delivers them to safe havens that offer freedom and rehabilitation. And . . . in the process, OUR expert rescue teams break the avaricious organizations that exploit these children and deliver the perpetrators to jail.

The OUR mission is straightforward: Using cutting-edge computer technology and human intelligence, OUR rescue teams go into the darkest corners of the world to help local law enforcement liberate enslaved children and dismantle the criminal networks.

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