The residents of Moapa Valley came out in full force to support a Breaking the Chains fundraising event held this past Friday, Aug. 16 at the Moapa Valley High School Gary Batchelor Gym. The event was organized by local volunteers and was held in support of Operation Underground Railroad OUR.
OUR is a non profit group that provides services to victims who have fallen prey to sex trafficking. The stated promise of the group is: “To the children who we pray for daily, we say: Your long night is coming to an end. Hold on. We are on our way. And to those captors and perpetrators, even you monsters who dare offend God’s precious children, we declare to you: be afraid. We are coming for you.”
Local support for this cause was shown to be strong. More than 600 people gathered at the event to raise money to help in fighting this growing problem. A total of about $7500 was raised in the single local event.
To keep the kids busy, several huge bounce houses lined the back of the gymnasium. Each one was crawling with the smiling, giggling faces of young children.
Dining tables were set up which soon became full of families enjoying a bbq meal made by local first responders who prepared over 500 meals that night.
There was even a dunk tank set up in front of the high school where participants could donate a dollar to dunk their favorite child, first responder or anyone else that wanted to cool off in the water.
An incredible amount of hours and effort from a group of local volunteers went into planning and hosting the fundraiser. Organizers were pleased with how it went.
“We are thrilled by the turnout from this event,” said Logandale resident Emily Reid who was one of the coordinators. “The community has been incredibly supportive.”
Community member Sandy Reese added, “This is a great way to give back to the community when you can. When you have victims and the only way to escape is to have people speak up and be made aware of what’s going on.”
Event coordinator Erika Whitmore commented on the purpose and goals of the local group of women who organized the event.
“Because we’re all mothers, the idea of any child being hurt is terrible,” she said. “That’s why we’re abolitionists.”.
Eagle Scout Hunter Kelley was on hand to share his Eagle Scout project. He too has been raising money to assist O.U.R. Kelley raised enough money to rescue around seven people, which is incredible for one person and a single Scout project.