It’s an honor to highlight an islander led organization called New Life Refuge Ministries. The founder of this amazing ministry organization is Minta Moore. I am proud to call her my friend and lovingly refer to her as the “Mighty Minta” for a very good reason! She actively works to educate our community and it’s leaders, create awareness and protect children from being human trafficked.
For twenty-five years, Minta Moore and her husband, John have called North Padre Island their home. They relocated here from Houston for John to run a family business. Minta and John are raising their family here, have built and run family business’ and have launched this ministry organization to protect and serve children. They do all this with the love and support of the Padre Island community, which means so much to them.
After 17 years of owning and operating a landscape business, Minta felt the winds changing, as they often do on our island. She sold her business to a fellow Islander in order to pursue her calling of the highest degree. Minta learned of human trafficking and knew she needed to do something to raise awareness on the issue and help those (children) who had been victimized by it.
In 2011, Minta founded New Life Refuge Ministries with the vision to end child trafficking and a mission of:
Since its inception, New Life Refuge Ministries has educated over 11,000+ people on the issue of human trafficking, and created many partnerships, such as the Texas Coastal Bend Border Region Human Trafficking Taskforce. A most notable accomplishment, through the commitment and support of the community, New Life Refuge Ministries opened and operates the only therapeutic care home for child victims of trafficking in South Texas. The New Life Refuge Ministries Home of Hope Campus is located in a non-disclosed location for the protection of those they serve. Upon completion the master planned, 57-acre campus will consist of 7 homes and will include on-site facilities for schooling, counseling, equine, art and other healing therapies. Each home on the campus will have the capacity to house up to six children and establish a model of “normalcy” that many of these child victims have never experienced. Each home is supervised 24/7. Highly trained and loving house parents are supported by awake staff at night to help insure the safety and security of the children. Those that work on the campus are truly called to this vocation; it is not just a job to them. Currently, there is one home on the campus that serves girls and the next home, for boys, will be completed early next year.
The reality of Human Trafficking is that it is happening all around us, even in the city of Corpus Christi. This crime leaves victims extremely traumatized requiring multi-faceted, highly specialized therapeutic care.
The prevalence of this crime has gained momentum and its devastating cause is demand. In January of 2017, The University of Texas released a study that estimates there are 79,000 children and youth being sex trafficked in Texas. This is a supply and demand business and unfortunately the commodity is children and youth, both girls and boys.
If you find yourself asking, “What can I do?” Get educated. Know the warning signs! New Life Refuge Ministries lives by the words of Nelson Mandela “Education is the most powerful weapon we can use to change the world”. New Life Refuge Ministries invites the community to contact them to speak with large or small groups, such as church groups, employers, boys and girls clubs or civic organizations regarding human trafficking, recognizing the signs and what kids should know to stay safe.
Each year the organization hosts a Celebration of Courage Boots & Bling ball and also a golf tournament to assist with their fundraising efforts. There are many opportunities to get involved with or support the New Life Refuge Ministries organization. If you would like to request a speaker, donate, have questions or would like to get involved, please go to their website www.NewLifeRefuge.com or call (361) 946-6331.