Posted by Julie Haff on Sep 26, 2018
Speaker today was Carmel Jud, Founder and Executive Director of Rising International.
Carmel Jud
Minutes of Rotary Club of SLV
Sept 19, 2018
Members in attendance:
President Linda, Ken, Judy, Joe, Don, Janet, Julie, Karen, Mary, Mike, Charlie, Heather, Ralph, Bob, Ed, Fransizka, Sue, Cindy, Laurie.  Guests: Virginia and Roxanne from MCR. Visiting Rotarian: Brenda Mee
President Linda opened the meeting with Rotary’s Four Way Test, introductions, and the Thought for the Day.
Announcements: PLEASE ATTEND  - Sept 29 SLV Rotary is co-sponsoring an event at Highlands - John Laird will be speaking at noon about the ballot propositions; Ralph is having a social on Thursday, Sept 20 5:30 It’s a potluck- signups for food and bring your own drinks; District Governor is visiting on Sept 26; Tuesday, Oct 9 Kaiser Arena Rotarian Social- $5 bring family and friends; Sat., Oct 13 Barrel Wrap in Watsonville 7:30 am; Avenues of Service on Oct 4 at the Biltmore in SJ. Linda will sign up any members who want to go—let her know; Lobster feed has a need for volunteers- Oct 12, 13 and 14. See Karen if you would like to help.
Guest speaker: Carmel Jud, founder of Rising International
Carmel is a local resident of Felton and was born in the old Dominican Hospital in Santa Cruz. She started her first company at 19 years old. She was later inspired when she opened a book and read, “How are you best suited to serve humanity?” She was struck by the question and decided it may not be in her current career. Carmel started researching ideas and writing to a woman in Afghanistan. That is how Rising International, a woman and girls empowerment organization, was born.
The Afghan woman started sneaking woman into her home and sewing dolls from scraps of fabric. (Visit Homa’s Facebook Page.) Selling just one doll could give them the means to purchase 6 meals.  Carmel tried to think of a way to sell dolls and came across the home party model (Mary Kay, etc.). Today, Rising International is operating in 27 countries.
Human trafficking – Carmel was looking at human trafficking in the world and wondered if it existed here. She was given a tip that there was a child bride operation in Monterey. The DA said Carmel had to have evidence so she went undercover and gave the DA the evidence they needed. It resulted in 3 convictions and the discovery of 100 young girls. Law enforcement knew about the child brides but gathering evidence is difficult and dangerous. Carmel set about building a coalition in Santa Cruz and Monterey County seeking to stop the local sex trades. Today the coalition has 300 members and they meet monthly.
Safe and Sound is a newer project that takes human trafficking survivors into schools and they teach people how to spot recruiters of the human trafficking industry. Recruiters often approach young girls and tell them they are so beautiful and should consider modeling.  Eventually young girls are introduced to pimps, etc. Often sex trafficking is booked online and at local hotels. To read more about this work, visit
Detective: Heather did a fantastic job!
Drawing: Joe could not find that joker!
The meeting was adjourned at 8:31a.m.
Minutes respectfully submitted by J. Haff