Artists combat human trafficking in Brunswick, Maine

BY MORGAN ROGERS

April 16th, 2014 

Q & A for the feature-length documentary #standwithme. Photo by Morgan Rogers.

Q & A for the feature-length documentary #standwithme. Photo by Morgan Rogers.

The Frontier Gallery, in Brunswick, and local artists held an event to raise awareness of human trafficking on April 11th that informed, entertained, and connected community members to a serious issue that continues to challenge the world today.

Local bands joined together to perform a benefit concert for the “Not Here” Conference on Human Trafficking, which also screened the feature-length documentary #standwithme.

Human trafficking continues to be a global issue with currently 30 million people enslaved.

The Not Here Justice in Action Network, a Maine based grassroots effort focused on engaging communities to address human trafficking, brought awareness to the issue by holding a night of art, music, sculpture, and film.

Local rock band Hollow Body Eclectic from Bath headlined and performed a song written especially for the event, “Now is the Time.” Members from Vox Nova and the DaPonte String Quartet joined them for the performance.

Hollow Body Eclectic. Photo by Alex Cornell du Houx.

Hollow Body Eclectic. Photo by Alex Cornell du Houx.

“There is probably not a more difficult topic to write a song about than human trafficking”, said Peter Alexander, leader of Hollow Body Eclectic band. “But Johannah’s new song, Now is the Time, hits the nail on the head with exquisitely moving melodies and lyrics that are both heart-wrenching and inspirational without being ‘preachy’ or heavy-handed.”

The feature-length documentary, #standwithme, screening sold out and was followed by a well-attended Q & A.

The film explores modern day child slavery through the eyes of nine year-old, Vivienne, who decided to start a lemonade stand to raise funds to get children out of slavery. It also highlights the humanitarian photographer, Lisa Kristine, who traveled across the world documenting slavery.

The film aims to inform and provide a toolbox for others to get involved and combat human trafficking.