25 to Thrive: The Church Working Together

25 to Thrive: The Church Working Together image




Join Stepping Stones Network. Help care for trafficking victims.

“Then I will give to the peoples [clear and pure speech from] purified lips [which reflect their purified hearts], that all of them may call on the name of the Lord, to serve Him shoulder to shoulder (united).”
- Zephaniah 3:9 Amplified

Sex trafficking is likely the most horrific crime against humanity in our time.

No doubt, a dark and uncomfortable topic. Many of us would like to avoid it altogether.

Or maybe we think, “not my job.” But Jesus came from heaven into this dark world to bring light and to overcome evil. It is our job, as The Church, to carry on His work and to be a voice for the voiceless. Those touched by this tragedy, inside and outside the church, need our love, friendship, and overwhelming compassion.

James 1:27 reminds us that "True spirituality that is pure in the eyes of our Father God is to make a difference in the lives of orphans and widows in their troubles and to refuse to be corrupted by the world's values."

Will your church join Stepping Stones Network and our 25 to Thrive Campaign?

Ways to Give Financially:

  • Mail a check to Stepping Stones Network PO Box 208 Grayslake, IL 60030. (We’ll avoid the fees and add your contribution to the fund manually.)
  • Give online through this 25 to Thrive Crowdfund page here.
  • Collect $25 Walmart, Target, and Domino’s Gift Cards for our client hospitality.
Ways to Help Individuals Get Educated, Get Involved, or Give:
  • Schedule a Get Educated presentation for your church.
  • Share this Get Involved link through your congregation’s communications channel. www.steppingstonesnetwork.org/Get-Involved
  • Allow your congregation to Give directly by sharing this crowdfund link. We’ll tally the total given by your church.

To stay up-to-date with the latest info, sign up for our Church Leader Email List.

The Facts about Local Sex Trafficking

The United States is one of the top three nations of origin for human/sex trafficking victims (State Department 2019). In the Chicago area, 16,000-25,000 women and girls are sold for sex each year (2007 Cook County Commission on Women's Issues Report), with 75% of sexually trafficked victims aged 0 to 20 (Statista.com 2018). Prostituted women are commonly sexually abused as children, and 91% tell no one about the abuse (Silbert, Mimi H. 1984). The typical victim is sold an average of 13 times per day and likely earns nothing (U. S. Department of State).

Predators pursue the most vulnerable children and desperate women, including single mothers. In most cases, these women are in their twenties and become vulnerable after spending most of their lives in the foster care system. Aging out of the system, they routinely become homeless, poverty-stricken, and desperate.

According to those with outreach experience in the area, conservative estimates are that 50% of trafficked women in Chicagoland have at least one child, with some having as many as eight. 50% of these children will be sold in the sex trade as well (Willis, Brian from Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies 11, 2016). Both mom and child need rescue, yet long-term residential programs do not admit women with their children. Many moms would rather sell their bodies than be separated from their kids. Stepping Stones Network has stepped up to fill this service gap, show it can be done, and inspire others to do the same.

Thank You to the churches who helped lay the foundation:

Christ Church - Lake Forest & Crossroads
Willow Creek North Shore
Alpine Chapel
The Chapel
Journey Church - Beach Park
Gurnee Community Church
Christian Neighbors Church
Cornerstone Community Church
Fierce Church
Soul City Church
Trinity Community Church
Lakeview Presbyterian
United Methodist Women of Libertyville
Waukegan Bible Baptist Church
Immanuel Bible Church

Our Mission

We are a network of trained professionals and compassionate individuals who partner with adults and nurture children impacted by commercial sexual exploitation as they take steps to interrupt the cycle of trauma, develop life skills and build a safe circle of support. Our mission is to educate and engage the community to prevent domestic (US-based) commercial sexual exploitation and to provide comprehensive, restorative care to survivors. Our vision is to create an engaged and compassionate community where sexual exploitation is not tolerated, human rights and dignity are valued, and the lives of both victims and perpetrators are being restored through God-centered relationships.Stepping Stones Network has already launched…

Corporate address & mailing address:
Oasis Productions DBA Stepping Stones Network
1200 W. 35th Street
Box 218
Chicago, IL 60609

Lake County mailing address:
Stepping Stones Network
PO Box 208
Grayslake, IL 60030

*Checks may be mailed to either address.

If your company offers matching funds, consider submitting your gift for a match!