Believe it or not, human trafficking happens in your community.

The good news is, YOU can help.

Human trafficking is a global issue, affecting nearly 50 million victims across the world. It’s also a local issue, as kids and adults alike are exploited in communities across the U.S. and Canada. It might be scary or sad to think about, but the good news is that you can do something about it. It doesn’t take huge heroic acts, but just small everyday actions you can take in your life to make a difference. See below for all of the ways you can help!

Learn the signs.

Traffickers are good at recruiting victims in ways that are hard to spot. It’s important to know how to recognize when someone might be targeting you or one of your friends. Learn the signs here.

Talk to a friend.

Share this page with two friends so they can learn about human trafficking and what they can do to keep themselves and others safe. Maybe you can organize an awareness event or food drive together!

Speak up.

If you see sexual content involving minors online, or you or your friend’s nude photos are online, do not share the content. Tell an adult, report it on the platform you see it on, and report it to the CyberTipline.

Donate to a local shelter or pantry.

Traffickers target people experiencing poverty and/or homelessness. Donating to a local food pantry or shelter can help address these vulnerabilities in your community. Visit Feeding America (U.S.) or Food Banks Canada (CAN) to find a food pantry in your area.

Stay safe online.

Traffickers often meet their victims online while they are pretending to be someone else. Learn tips for how you and your friends can stay safe online. And, if you EVER have a question about something you see online, talk to a parent, teacher or other safe adult.

Raise awareness at school.

Locker Slam! provides awareness materials that can be displayed on school lockers and hallways to reach fellow students with information about human trafficking. Email

Get help.

If you or someone you know is in trouble or being made to do something you don’t want to do, it’s okay to ask for help. You are not alone and you won’t be in trouble. Talk to a safe adult or reach out to a human trafficking hotline: 1-888-3737-888 (U.S.) | 233733 (TEXT-U.S.) | 1-833-900-1010 (CAN)

Keep in touch.

Sign up for the Cool Aunt Series newsletter or follow her on Instagram (@thecoolauntseries) to continue learning about this issue and how you can help. Rachel is a survivor of human trafficking, and she shares real life info to youth about how to stay safe and fight trafficking.