“I didn’t realize why I felt so drawn to Hope for Justice until we arrived at the event. I felt shaky and wanted to burst into tears. I wasn't sure where these emotions were coming from. It hit me about half way though the race…I was running for those who weren’t free yet, but I was.”
The 2016 recipient of Pro-Link GLOBAL’s Ferdinand Meischke Philanthropy Award volunteers for more much than recognition. As a survivor of an abusive marriage, Kristina Galvan is able to connect with Hope for Justice on an emotional and psychological level.
Hope for Justice is an international non-profit organization that seeks to end human trafficking and slavery with offices in the United States, United Kingdom, Norway and Cambodia.
Kristina fights back tears and shares, “I was in an abusive relationship where I felt trapped and unable to get out. I was so confused and I didn’t know what I was going to do. My situation pales in comparison to those who are trafficked, however I can relate and empathize to the specific feelings that the victims of human trafficking go through, and I wanted to help.”
Three years ago, Kristina never enjoyed running but after hearing commercial after commercial promoting Team Freedom and Hope for Justice on her local Joy FM radio station she made a commitment to herself that this was something she wanted to do. She signed up for her first 15k run without ever running before. She started training in August and with lots of hard work and a commitment to her training schedule, she successfully completed the run in February. She has volunteered every year since.
“Fundraising for Team Freedom, facilitating awareness for Hope for Justice and running in the event showed me how much I had overcome and how strong I was now.” In 2016 the team raised $162,016 and most of Kristina’s donations each year come from her co-workers, “It means so much to me to work for a company that encourages its employees to volunteer and be active in the community. Most of the money I raised has been from the generosity of my colleagues here at Pro-Link GLOBAL.”
Pro-Link GLOBAL is a global immigration provider with philanthropy and volunteerism ingrained in its culture. Founders Andrea and Lance Elliott named the annual philanthropy award after Andrea’s late father who instilled in her a strong call to service through giving back to one’s community and helping the less fortunate.
Kristina is thrilled to have won the award this year, “Bringing awareness to the issue is the most rewarding part of volunteering and fundraising. People tell me I’m an inspiration and it feels good.”
She shares her heartfelt advice with other women who want to get involved, “Raising money was the part I was scared of, but, the generosity of others can be overwhelming. Don’t let anything hold you back from what you’re passionate about.”