Story By: Amanda Cuda
BRIDGEPORT — Activist and author Rachel Lloyd will be the keynote speaker for the Center for Family Justice’s annual Speaking of Women Fundraiser. However, like many fundraisers this year, the event will take place virtually, from noon to 2 p.m. on Sept. 22.
The Bridgeport-based center provides shelter and a variety of other services to victims of domestic and sexual violence. Speaking of Women is the program’s major fundraiser, and past keynote speakers have included Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman and TV host Tamron Hall.
Lloyd is best known for her work with young women and girls who have been sexually exploited and trafficked. In 1998, at just 23 years old, Rachel Lloyd founded Girls Educational and Mentoring Services at her kitchen table with $30 and a borrowed computer.
According to her biography, Lloyd “was driven by the lack of services for commercially sexually exploited and domestically trafficked girls and young women and the incredible stigma and punishment they faced from service providers, law enforcement, the courts, their families and society.”
Her program is now the largest service provider of its kind in the nation providing intensive services and support to over 450 girls and young women, preventive outreach and education to 1,500 youth, and training over 1,300 professionals each year.
Her accomplishments also include producing the Showtime documentary “Very Young Girls,” which has been seen by over 4 million people, and writing the memoir “Girls Like Us.”
To register for the online event, visit the Center for Family Justice web site. VIP options and sponsorship opportunities are also available and can be arranged by contacting Lisa Labella at 203-334-6154 ext. 121 or at llabella@ .