Name: Dara Sander
Class standing: Senior
Major: Magazine journalism
Hometown: Elmore, OH (near Toledo)
Her Campus: Where do you volunteer and what do they do there?
Dara Sander: RAHAB (Reaching Above Hopelessness and Brokenness) Ministries. It’s a nonprofit organization helping in the recovery and restoration of women who have been sex trafficked.
HC: How did you first start volunteering? How did you hear about the opportunity and what made you want to volunteer?
DS: I was involved in IJM (international Justice System) Kent State chapter. It’s an organization that brings awareness to sex trafficking internationally. I had a friend who was a part of IJM and told me about the work that RAHAB was doing and I wanted to see if I could be a part of RAHAB’s mission. I wanted to start volunteering because I was already interested in helping victims of sex trafficking and I wanted to help women in the local area who were being trafficked. People don’t think the U.S. has sex trafficking, but it does and Ohio is a major hub for sex trafficking. But there are organizations like RAHAB that are helping victims out of that vicious cycle of trafficking.
HC: What exactly do you do there?
DS: There are many facets to RAHAB Ministries and how we reach out to victims of sex trafficking. I am a part of the team at the street outreach house in the inner-city of Akron where I help women who can come off of the street and receive food, clothing and hygiene products. They also have a bible study time where we can talk and pray with the women. I also have gone to different outreaches where, as a team, we go and talk to women and tell them about RAHAB.
HC: What’s your favorite part about volunteering?
DS: My favorite part of volunteering is seeing women come to have hope and open their hearts to love. I love seeing the women open up and share their stories. I love forming loving friendships with the women. I love to see them form a relationship with God and pursue Him. I believe that the women’s lives can be restored from all the brokenness and I just want to show them love and hope that they might have never experienced in their lives before.
HC: What is your least favorite part about volunteering?
DS: My least favorite part is seeing women who I’ve formed friendships with either never come back to RAHAB or seeing women who’ve been in prostitution for years and on drugs and walking the streets.
HC: How long do you plan on volunteering with RAHAB ministries for?
DS: I plan to volunteer with RAHAB until I get an internship that’s out of the area or when I graduate, whichever comes first, so within the next seven months. I’ve volunteered with RAHAB for two years now.
HC: What sort of volunteering would you like your future to consist of, whether it be at RAHAB or someowhere else?
DS: Wherever I end up after I graduate I would like to volunteer at a place like RAHAB that helps women who have been trafficked, whether it’s older women or minors. I really have a heart for those women and I want to be a part of the restoration of their lives for the rest of my life.