January 28th

Anywhere - Virtual


About The Series

Ayuda’s 6-part speaker series, Faces of Change, offers a space for informative and educational discourse on the impact of current events, cultural shifts, policy changes, and other issues affecting the immigrant communities Ayuda serves.

Join us on Thursday, January 28 for a discussion on human trafficking in the United States in honor of Human Trafficking Awareness Month. What can be done at the local, state, and national levels to eradicate human trafficking? Tune in for this informative discussion to learn more!

Engage. Inform. Educate. Repeat.

Meet the January 28 Speakers

The third installment of Ayuda’s Speaker Series: Faces of Change is all about human trafficking. Join us as we take a deep-dive into the anti-trafficking movement in the United States and what we can do eradicate trafficking.

Tune in January 28 from 6PM-7PM to find out!

Event Moderator

Jessica Contrera

Jessica Contrera

Reporter, The Washington Post

Jessica Contrera is a reporter for The Washington Post whose work focuses on structural inequality and the lives impacted by it. Her in-depth story about Chrystul Kizer, a sex trafficking survivor facing life in prison in Wisconsin, brought national attention and advocacy to the case. She continues to write about trafficking, the shifting awareness of what it really looks like, and the criminalization of survivors.



Jean Bruggeman

Jean Bruggeman

Executive Director, Freedom Network USA (FNUSA)

Jean Bruggeman is the Executive Director of Freedom Network USA (FNUSA), the nation’s largest alliance of advocates and survivors addressing all forms of human trafficking in the US.

FNUSA uses a human rights-based approach to ensure that trafficked persons have access to justice, safety, and opportunity through coalition-building, training and technical assistance, and policy advocacy.

Jean served as a Human Trafficking Fellow with the Office for Victims of Crime within the US Department of Justice from 2012-2015. She provided leadership in the development of the Federal Strategic Action Plan for Services to Victims of Human Trafficking in the United States, the first OVC Human Trafficking Survivor Forum, and the OVC video series, “The Faces of Human Trafficking.” Jean has over 20 years of victim services experience and expertise in nonprofit management, language access, immigration, human trafficking, and domestic violence. She has developed comprehensive legal and social services programs for survivors, provided direct legal representation to survivors, authored training resources, and developed an interpreter service to ensure access to legal services in the District of Columbia. She is a graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center and Bryn Mawr College, and is a member of the DC and Maryland (inactive) bar associations.

John Freeman

John Freeman

Director of Law Enforcement Operations, The Human Trafficking Institute

John Freeman joined the Institute as the new Director of Law Enforcement Operations on August 17. He brings 21 years of experience with the Diplomatic Security Service (DSS), U.S. Department of State, where he retired in July 2020.

As the Director of Law Enforcement Operations, John will co-lead the Institute’s programs in Uganda and Belize, establish and maintain relationships with government and non-government officials, establish and support law enforcement specialized units in both countries, and supervise all Institute Law Enforcement Advisors providing them with training and mentorship.

Prior to joining the Institute, John was the first DSS Human Trafficking Investigations Coordinator and represented both his bureau and department in formulating national policy, expanding interagency task forces, and developing specialized anti-trafficking training. In this role, he also initiated investigations, including victim interviews, coordinated multi-leveled responses for sensitive cases, and supported numerous successful prosecutions. John facilitated investigations with many international law enforcement and NGO partners, and in recent years, was called on by multiple anti-trafficking NGOs for his participation in training seminars and conferences. This culminated when he was named a member of the U.S Delegation to the United Nations Convention Against Transnational Crime’s Working Group on Trafficking in Persons in 2019.

While serving as a Foreign Service special agent, John was posted to U.S. Embassies in Nigeria and South Korea, the first DSS representative to the Joint Terrorism Task Force – Seattle, Washington, and served on Secretary Condoleezza Rice’s Protection Detail. Prior to joining Diplomatic Security, John served in the U.S. Army.

Bella Hounakey

Bella Hounakey

Survivor, Advocate, and Member of the U.S. Advisory Council on Human Trafficking

Bella Hounakey has dedicated her professional life to encouraging and supporting victims as they navigate the recovery process. Since 2011, she has served as an advocate, organizer, and speaker on anti-trafficking programs and policies. She previously served on the Board of the Human Trafficking Coalition in Michigan. She has also counseled female victims of sex trafficking at a specialized residential Trauma Recovery Center. Since 2015, she has worked with and supported the most vulnerable trafficking victims in the foster care system. Throughout her career, Bella’s ambitions have remained steadfast: raise awareness, reduce risk of victimization, educate members of the judicial system and general public, and advocate for victim protection and treatment. Bella received a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice and Spanish; and a Master’s degree from Western Michigan University.


Upcoming Faces of Change Events



Lanuage Access and Justice. Details coming soon

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