Filled With Love

February has much to offer!

February 2023


Happy February, WARriors!

Love is in the air, mingled with flowers and candies and boxes of chocolates.

As you are no doubt aware, we love sharing how the strength of survivors is fueled through the encouragement and love of their spouses. We love seeing transformations because of love from friends, family, and WAR’s staff and partners.

Remember that a kind word can heal, transform, and empower!

Another thing we love sharing is the latest news and events, please keep scrolling!

Presidential Travel: March
This March, Becky McDonald, founder and president of WAR, Int’l, is headed to Germany to train U.S. Military in anti-trafficking. She will also be speaking to a group of women, possibly the Dept. of Defense school, and more. Because of the presentation she did for the men’s retreat in December, she may speak to chaplains who handle the many suicides in barracks. Please pray for wisdom as she seeks to be a blessing.

Follow Becky on Facebook!

Fresh USTC Designs
Straight from our U.S. Training Center, we are incredibly excited about these fresh designs from the Encompassed Creations!

They are in time for your Valentine’s Day purchase. As well as beyond as love is always in style.

Shop the Collection here!

Resource Page
With last month being Human Trafficking Awareness Month, our goal is to go from awareness to action! We encourage you to take a moment to discover what actions you can take to rise up against this injustice of our time.

As you are ready to take the next step, here are Resources For You.

Light Up Your World Monthly Zooms
Please join us on February 27th to hear from the heart of another courageous survivor. Our special guest speaker Pearl and WAR, Int’l Founder and President Rebecca McDonald will discuss trauma and healing.

As a survivor of childhood sexual abuse and trafficking, Pearl will share with us her healing journey and provide an honest picture of the road to recovery. You will be inspired by her faith and perseverance in finding her voice so she can speak up not only for herself but also on behalf of all those who are struggling with the impact of trauma in their lives.

Visit our upcoming events page for additional details.

Galentine’s Extravaganza
Gather your girlfriends for some fun and set aside some time for yourself to take a deep breath, share some laughs with your girlfriends, and simply enjoy hanging out with us.

As part of the festivities, we will have door prizes, gifts, giveaways, and more!

Learn more here!

First-Ever Lunch ‘N’ Learn
Join us on February 21st from 11am-2pm at our U.S. Training Center for our first-ever Lunch ‘N’ Learn.

Rebecca McDonald, founder and president of WAR, Int’l, will be sharing her own personal journey of deepening her walk with God.

Learn More Here.

Resources For You

January 2023


-Join us on the 4th Monday of the month for our Light Up Your World Zooms to hear directly from survivors as well as experts in the field. Learn more here.

-Shop our Remembrance line which include the names and ages of human trafficking victims. #ShopToRemember here.

-Get inspired and read Stories Of Rescue here.

-Read Understand The Risks.

Call To Action: Time, Talent, Treasure

TIME
Host a Party or Event!
Volunteer at Events or WAR HQ

TALENT
Share your Creative Skills
Become a Circle of Protection

TREASURE
Give Through Your Purchases
Give your sweat, space, or fundraising solutions


A Song for the Silenced

Short video in honor of human trafficking awareness.

I Have a Dream: Dinner with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

By Becky McDonald, Founder & President
-January 2023


The WAR Chest Boutique carries a fun deck of cards with a variety of questions to help learn the real heart of a person. One of my favorite questions is, “If you could have dinner with ANYONE, either from history or alive today, who would it be and why?” When asked, I usually give a stock answer, but today I would change my answer to “dinner with a man named Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.”

Years ago, I started hosting dinners at my home with men and women on specific issues, deliberately inviting those with opposing ideas, perspectives, expertise, or experience. But there was always one rule. NO ONE could be rude, sarcastic, or angry. Our conversation was a feast of curiosity, deep thought, and differing approaches to the same issue, but it had to be kind. Imagine such a dinner.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. captures our thoughts and hearts, both then and now. What fascinates me is that first and foremost, he was a shepherd of his flock, a pastor. No one goes into that career unless they desire to sacrificially serve, motivate, lift, and love people. This man was obviously brilliant, graduating from high school at age 15.

Yet, he certainly didn’t follow the ditty, “So heavenly minded that they are of no earthly good,” or so brilliant that they can’t relate to real life. He was anointed with grace and gentleness, and a stunning ability to communicate equally to all, whether they were a 10-year-old or the power elite.

Our deck of WAR Conversation Cards, available here asks questions like, “If you knew you couldn’t fail, what would you try?” But, if I had the honor of serving Dr. King dinner, I’d use his famous quotes as a platform for questions. If I invited you to sit at that table, I’d love to hear your questions as well. Remember the #1 rule and send me your questions!

I’ve italicized some of his famous quotes below and included my own thoughts on these rare bits of wisdom.

* Forgiveness is not an occasional act. It is a permanent attitude… Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness.
-Wow, what if that was the subject line for dinner? How would you incorporate that value into your life? I’d certainly want to know what story led him to that truth.

* I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear… Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into friend… Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, “What are you doing for others?”
-Oh, that we had this kind of leadership today!!!
-Sounds a lot like scripture’s double love command to love your neighbor as yourself.

* Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase… If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward… Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle…
-As a founder, I can promise you nothing WAR, Int’l has accomplished would have happened if I’d needed (though I wanted) to see the whole staircase.
-What dreams are you holding back from because you want all the lights to turn green before you go down the road? Start running. If the light does turn red, screech to a halt before taking off again. Because if you shoot for nothing, you’ll hit it every time.

Another two of his quotes reflect why WAR, Int’l exists today. He said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” Many of you know the story that, at the age of 14, began my passion to be a voice for the silenced. I do not fear the darkness we march into. I’ve witnessed for decades that when you bring darkness into the light, it loses its power.

Dr. King also said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.” Indeed! With the Light of the World, my passion is to shed light on a dark subject (such as human trafficking) so that you leave with hope, joy, and a compelling desire to be a circle of protection to those in your own circles of influence!

Before his brutal death, Dr. King closed his legendary speech with, “…We’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it doesn’t matter with me now. Because I’ve been to the mountaintop… I’ve looked over. And I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land…”

Today. I honor this shepherd, this man of courage and ultimate sacrifice who walked with all of us in the valley of shadows to reach his mountaintop. We can do this. We too can dream.

Human Trafficking Awareness Day

January 11, 2023


(Note: This article includes Stories of Healing.)

There are many reports and statistics available regarding the number of human trafficking victims.

→ In 2021, 10,359 human trafficking situations involving 16,554 individual victims were reported to the U.S. National Human Trafficking Hotline. (source)
→ 49.6 million people were living in modern slavery in 2021, of which 27.6 million were in forced labor and 22 million in forced marriage. (source)
→ In 2021, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children received more than 17,200 reports of possible child sex trafficking. (source)

Whereas statistical information and reporting are helpful with understanding the issues as solutions are sought, focusing merely on the numbers can make the victims nameless, simply a number, as it were.

Each and every victim of human trafficking has a name, a voice that has been silenced, as well as a life worth saving, and a story worth telling. This fact makes highlighting stories of rescue and healing vital.

In honor of #HumanTraffickingAwarenessDay2023, here are three such stories.

Erin: healing moment

At a recent Human Trafficking Awareness Conference, the Q&A panel included social workers, law enforcement officers, lawyers, and Erin, a survivor of human trafficking.

When asked how the police had treated her, Erin froze, not wanting to tip the apple cart. Seeing Erin’s hesitation, Becky McDonald, founder & president of WAR, Int’l, encouraged her to speak up and share her experience.

Erin shared how the police were not helpful regarding her situation, telling her there wasn’t anything they could do for her. One officer even asked for her number.

Upon hearing the apologies from the male law enforcement officers on the panel, Erin had an unexpected response. Those apologies, she realized, healed a place in her heart she didn’t know needed healing.

Trauma-informed interviewing is key when assisting survivors. During our February 2022 Light Up Your World Zoom, we learned about this interviewing technique from Amy Allen, a federal law enforcement officer. Click here to view it.

Reena: finding solutions

How many girls had now disappeared from Reena’s village? She had watched as foreigners came, promising education or stable jobs to girls of impoverished families. Out of desperation, they had been sent or sold to provide for the rest of the family. But Reena knew these promises were empty.

Reena knew traffickers targeted poor and vulnerable families.

Yet she had a plan. Reena began a small bakery where she could employ at-risk women in her village, giving them the fair payment they needed to provide for their families.

To Reena’s delight, the bakery thrived! Now she’s running four sustainable micro-enterprises to sponsor a safehouse, counseling services, vocational training, micro-loans, and different classes!

Reena’s work is helping attack trafficking at its root cause and freeing hundreds of lives from its threat. Support WAR’s micro-enterprise program to be a ‘Reena’ to others at risk.

Rhoda: story of resilience

Ever since she was a little girl, Rhoda wanted to sing. After much local success, Rhoda thought she caught her big break when a talent agent promised a vocal tour in Japan. Though her first visit proved successful, on her second trip, traffickers took her papers and forced her to serve drinks at a bar. One night a co-worker lured Rhoda to a “dance club” filled with the Japanese mafia. After drugging and abducting her, mafia members repeatedly brutalized and raped Rhoda for three days.

She eventually escaped, but the Japanese police blamed her, and a counselor even advised suicide as the only way to preserve her dignity. Even after returning home to America, help was nowhere to be found.

Finally, Rhoda discovered a community of healing and support at WAR, Int’l. Now she no longer numbs her pain with substance abuse and self-mutilation. Instead, she has transformed her suffering into a story of survival and hope. Rhoda uses her passionate voice to share this story, singing at benefit concerts, speaking out against human trafficking, and whispering words of hope and encouragement to vulnerable teens and wounded women.

Our sweet Rhoda is featured every Monday on our Facebook (WAR, Int’l and WAR Chest Boutique) and Instagram pages (WAR Int’l and WAR Chest Boutique). Make sure to catch her fabulous Monday Minute videos to be encouraged and inspired. Oh, and #ShopToRescue her weekly-updated collection here!

Resources For You:

-Join us on the 4th Monday of the month for our Light Up Your World Zooms to hear directly from survivors as well as experts in the field. Learn more here.

-Shop our Remembrance line which include the names and ages of human trafficking victims. #ShopToRemember here.

-Get inspired and read Stories Of Rescue here.

-Read Understand The Risks.

Call To Action: Time, Talent, Treasure

TIME
Host a Party or Event!
Volunteer at Events or WAR HQ

TALENT
Share your Creative Skills
Become a Circle of Protection

TREASURE
Give Through Your Purchases
Give your sweat, space, or fundraising solutions


A Song for the Silenced

Short Video in honor of this day.

January 2023 – Updates, News, Events, ICYMI

January 2023


Happy New Year, WARriors!

Let’s ring in the new year with purpose! Remember, you are the ones who make it possible to provide vulnerable women, children, and men as well, with places of safety, dignity, and hope. Your involvement supports the work of our programs and partners, worlds away and here in the USA. As you read through this email, be thinking about how you may want to take action to get more involved in the coming year!

Scroll down for an update on the latest and greatest with WAR, Int’l!


Presidential Travel Update

Over the next few weeks, Becky, founder and president of WAR, Int’l, and a WAR board member will be traveling to meet with partners in Asia and Africa. In addition to business meetings with our ministry partners, they will also be encouraging our partners, many of whom serve on the frontlines of the red light districts. Becky’s schedule will be long and arduous as she scouts for new product possibilities and hopefully has the chance to visit Sweetie. Please pray for strength and open doors.

Join us on March’s Light Up Your World Zoom for her trip update!


Human Trafficking Awareness

For the last few years, January has been named National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. January is also known as Human Trafficking Awareness Month. Here at WAR, Int’l, we observe National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month every month. You see, trafficking doesn’t sleep. Oppression reigns around the world… Continue Reading Here.


Have a Gift Card?

Did you receive a WAR gift card for Christmas? Simply call our WAR Chest Boutique at 616-530-1234 to redeem yours today. #ShopToEmpower

If you didn’t receive a gift card but still want to #ShopToRescue, no worries, we can help you! Simply shop our online boutique here!

Don’t forget to join us for a special survivor testimonial on this month’s Light Up Your World Zoom call! On Monday, January 23 special guest AJ will once again be joining us to share more about her personal journey of becoming a birth mother and finding healing from trauma and addiction. As she shares, your heart will be deeply touched, and you’ll find AJ is more than a survivor—she is also a THRIVER who has made it her life’s work to empower other survivors as they traverse the path to healing. Visit our upcoming events page for further details.


Set Free

Did you know we launched our Set Free Web Series in 2020? As the world was shutting down because of COVID-19, it was one answer to the dilemma of “How do we get the word out so others can learn about those in need as they #ShopToEmpower?” As we enter our 4th year of producing this series, a big thank you to those who watch our videos as well as purchase the products we highlight. Shop the current Set Free special here!

You can find the entire series, and more, here!


Fresh Finds

Every Friday we curate a collection of specialty gifts from the WAR Chest Boutique. It is a treasure chest, if you will, of unique and beautiful handcrafted items—like jewelry, scarves, accessories, and more — to provide you with moments of opportunity.

-The opportunity to add fresh style to your home and attire.
-The opportunity to equip and empower survivors.
-The opportunity to give a hand up for those at risk to live in freedom.

Browse this week’s collection here!


Free Shipping on $75+

News flash! Did you know we offer free shipping on all orders of $75 or more? You can #ShopToRescue anytime at warchestboutique.com and save on shipping while shopping from the comfort of your own home. It’s never too cold to shop from your own cozy nook, laptop in hand, as you browse through the beautiful items featured in our online boutique!