By Stephanie Struck

Author’s note: Morgan Perry, founder of Kairos Media Productions, a nonprofit that uses media to inspire hope that influences audiences to make everlasting change, is the producer of Sex+Money: A National Search For Human Worth, the project that sparked the idea to create Kairos. She is also a missionary with YWAM and a producer in the Film Department for the anti-sex trafficking organization Exodus Cry. Morgan shared her story with Fieldnotes Magazine for this article.

Human trafficking—what has become a hot topic for many today was not widely acknowledged even as recently as 2006.

At age 18, Morgan Perry spent time in the red-light district of Chang Mai, Thailand, where she was confronted firsthand by the horror that is sex trafficking. She recalls one day finding a girl, whom she had recently met, left outside drugged and almost completely naked after a night of exploitation. As she and her teammates worked to find help for the girl, Morgan heard the term “sex trafficking” for the first time.

Morgan asked God to use her to help these girls. Her prayer and her passion for media led her to YWAM’s University of the Nations. As part of her degree program in Mass Media, Morgan traveled to more than 30 nations. Human trafficking was found almost everywhere she went, and she developed a vision to tell stories of what she had discovered, believing that “if people knew, they would want to do something.”

Sex+Money: A Global Search for Human Worth was published in 2008 by a team of 19 photojournalists, including Morgan, to tell these stories through a ministry of YWAM called PhotogenX.

Published in 2008, Sex+Money shares stories of human trafficking on an international scale.

Published in 2008, Sex+Money shares stories of human trafficking on an international scale.

Shortly after, Morgan heard a pastor talk about a girl who was sex trafficked in the United States. She called a friend and mentor, who was serving in the U.S. congress, and learned that this story was not isolated. Sex trafficking was happening in the United States but it was underreported and its scope unknown.

Morgan Perry meeting

Morgan Perry meeting with Dorchen Leidholdt, cofounder of the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women (CATW) and director of the Center for Battered Women’s Legal Services at Sanctuary for Families in New York City.

Shocked and compelled to act, Morgan continued to use media to expose the injustice of human trafficking. Her work centered on answering four key questions:

  1. What is the problem?
  2. How did we get here?
  3. What is at stake if we stay here?
  4. Where do we go from here?

These helped shape the documentary film, Sex+Money: A National Search for Human Worth. Released in 2011, the film was part of a national tour through all 50 states to raise awareness about sex trafficking in the United States. Morgan continues to frame her work by these questions, tailoring the answers for her audience, believing that answering these questions will lead to people engaging in action together.

US anti-human trafficking tour for Sex+Money.

US anti-sex trafficking tour for Sex+Money.

Morgan’s own learning about the reality and scope of sex trafficking has directly influenced millions of people. Sex+Money has been featured on CNN, NBC, and recognized by the U.S. Department of Justice.

With the wide success of the book and movie, Sex+Money had grown into a brand. In 2012, Morgan applied for the Praxis Accelerator Program. Their nonprofit mentorship program helped her think through the issues and determine if Sex+ Money should be a stand-alone organization or if a separate media entity should be created. Out of this experience, Kairos Media Productions (KMP) was born as a nonprofit to help other organizations with media projects and network resources for social good.

Morgan Perry of Kairos Media Productions.

Morgan Perry of Kairos Media Productions.

The trail of journalism continues to lead Morgan to new questions, which lead to further questions. She is currently working on a second film, likely to be titled, Liberated: the New Sexual Revolution, in partnership with the team at Exodus Cry that produced the widely successful documentary Nefarious about the international sex trade. She is a producer in the film department at Exodus Cry. While Nefarious and Sex+Money expose the horrific reality of sex trafficking both globally and domestically, Liberated will examine the historical roots of the hyper-sexualized culture in which we live and focus on the root of the problem, which is the demand. In searching for a healthy sexuality, Liberated will find undiscovered fronts in the war on human trafficking, and unexpected hope for victims around the world. Morgan and the Exodus Cry team intend to release Liberated in 2015, and then begin work on a third film in a trilogy focused on trafficking, which will dig deeper into the spiritual and cultural worldviews that perpetuate slavery.

The members of the Kairos team are entrepreneurs in the realm of media. Not seeking to start another organization to combat injustice, they focus on partnerships and use media to make a difference. In her work, Morgan shares that she has learned repeatedly the primacy of “relationship over task.” The nature of her work leads to regular meetings about tasks, but Morgan affirms that, “if not done in relationship, the task would not get done.” She is thrilled for opportunities to partner in engaging the root of injustice and answering questions together to move forward.

Fieldnotes Magazine and Morgan invite you to take action to end the injustice of sex trafficking that is happening both around the globe and right here in the United States. Get involved here. And you can follow Morgan to stay informed.

Take Action!

Take Action!

Stephanie Struck is an executive assistant at the Max De Pree Center for Leadership.

Fieldnotes Magazine is a publication of the Max De Pree Center for Leadership at Fuller Theological Seminary. We would love to hear from you about people, businesses, or other organizations we can interview or feature. Please email The Editor at Fieldnotes Magazine.

 

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