Operation Underground Railroad, Inc

Empowering rescue and rehabilitation of children from sex trafficking worldwide

Lead Organization

Operation Underground Railroad, Inc

Anaheim, California, United States


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To learn more about – or provide significant funding to – this project, please contact Lever for Change.

Project Summary

Problem: Around two million children are exploited every year in the global commercial sex trade. Solution: Operation Underground Railroad (O.U.R.) is dedicated to eradicating child trafficking and child sexual exploitation around the world. O.U.R service teams are comprised of highly skilled operatives with extensive investigative backgrounds representing law enforcement, military, and the Intelligence community. These service teams travel the world working in close coordination with law enforcement using cutting-edge tools and technology to locate and rescue victims. Once rescued, survivors are returned to their families or placed with vetted, reputable aftercare facilities. Since 2013, O.U.R. has assisted in the rescue of over 2,600 survivors and the arrests of more than 1,400 traffickers worldwide. O.U.R. has empowered law enforcement and aftercare in 23 U.S. states and 22 countries. With more resources, O.U.R. can create more partnerships and empower the rescue and rehabilitation of more children from sex trafficking.

Problem Statement

Around 2 million children are exploited every year in the global commercial sex trade. Not only are these children deprived of the basic human right of freedom, but they experience physical, emotional, mental, and psychological trauma unimaginable to those who have not suffered it. Recovery for those fortunate enough to be rescued, even with the best resources, can take a lifetime.Two major contributors to the problem are pornography and poverty--current plagues infecting to at least some degree every country in the world and both of which aren't going away. Pornography fuels the demand, and poverty often supplies it. One reason this problem exists to the extent it does is that good people simply are unaware that it's happening. Indeed, who could imagine such a thing as millions of children being raped for money? But it is a sad reality. And once we know, we must do something to help.Other groups are tackling the issues of pornography and poverty--the front end of the problem--and we are grateful for their efforts. However, changes in these areas will take decades at best. We seek to save the millions of children who are enslaved and suffering NOW. O.U.R. employs a three-fold focus: 1) Emancipate victims (rescue and rehabilitation), 2) Empower law enforcement (with tools, training, and technology), and 3) Enlighten the public (awareness and education). We have discovered that 1 and 2 go hand in hand as the most effective means of rescue and rehabilitation.

Solution Overview

Since our success is measured primarily by the number children rescued from sex trafficking, it is easy to track and measure our progress. In 2014, our first year in operation, we rescued 252 children and helped arrest 30 offenders/traffickers. In 2018, after five years of experience, we rescued 787 children and helped arrest 468 offenders/traffickers. Six months into 2019, we had already exceeded both the total rescues and total arrests in 2018.We do not participate in rescues without an invitation from law enforcement. We go where we are called to help, from our own community to across the world. Cumulative totals since our founding are 2,653 children rescued and 1,440 traffickers arrested. (If you factor in that an average child offender offends between 200 - 400 children before being caught, the number of pre-emptive rescues is exponential.) We have accomplished this much with a budget of approximately $30 million over five years.With $20 million annually over five years, and with the experience we have gained over the last five years, we anticipate approximately 3,000 child rescues and 1,500 arrests annually, for a total of 15,000 rescues and 7,500 arrests over five years. While 15,000 rescues may appear to be a drop in the bucket of two million child sex slaves, to each and every one of those 15,000 children rescued from a daily hell of depravity, it is an ocean of freedom and hope.

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Project Funders

  • Mercury One 2014 - 2018
  • Anthony Robbins Foundation 2016 - 2019
  • doTerra Healing Hands Foundation 2016 - 2019

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