By Dylan Bova, Class of 2027
On May 3 at the Lindor Hall Gym, Project Red Light held its first event, a self-defense class for students taught by the Lake County Sheriff’s Department, to raise money for human trafficking victims. Project Red Light is a nonprofit organization founded by eighth-grade student Dylan Bova. Project Red Light’s mission is to spread awareness about human trafficking in Central Florida and provide a sense of security and confidence to the people of Central Florida. Dylan worked with the Lake County Sheriff’s Department to develop a presentation to share with Montverde Academy students.
At this event, Lieutenant James Dilmore from the Lake County Sheriff’s Human Trafficking Division spoke on the issue of human trafficking, how to spot victims, and what to do if you suspect someone is at risk. Deputy Mike Givens, together with his trainees and other officers, shared how to stay out of a dangerous situation through situational awareness and taught several self-defense techniques to defend yourself in an unsafe situation. Eighth grader Bridget Robbins, who attended the event, said, “I thought it was really cool that even if you didn’t have that much strength, you could still make a big impact on the punching mat with the attacks they tell you to use. I also found myself more aware of my surroundings after the quick slideshow lesson.”
Participants were asked to bring in a minimum 10-dollar donation to be donated to the Nomi Network, an organization that provides career support to victims of human trafficking around the world, as well as to those persons at risk for human trafficking.
On Wednesday, May 10, Dylan met via Zoom with the Nomi Network’s Senior Associate of Giving and Events, Ms. Alisa Hardison, to discuss the event and present Nomi with the donation. Over 20 students and parents attended the event. Dylan was also able to secure a corporate sponsor. As a result, Project Red Light was able to make a donation to Nomi Network of nearly $500.
To learn more about Project Red Light or to make a donation, please visit ProjectRedLight.info.