Martin SOUND OF FREEDOM – Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez delivers his message during the premier night of the powerful film “Sound of Freedom” at SM Megamall Cinema in Mandaluyong City Monday. Speaker Romualdez hopes the movie will raise awareness, collective actions to eradicate human trafficking, and ensure the safety and dignity of the children. The House Committees on Welfare of Children and on Accounts and Tingog and BHW Party-list groups presented the movie. Photo by Ver Noveno

House panels unite to combat child trafficking

September 19, 2023 Ryan Ponce Pacpaco 271 views

Martin1Via film based on true story

THE House Committees on Accounts and Welfare of Children have joined hands to spread awareness of the menace of child trafficking and mobilize public opinion to combat it through a special screening on Monday of a film that exposes the horrors of this heinous crime.

The film, “Sound of Freedom,” is based on the real story of Tim Ballard, a former US Department for Homeland Security agent who conducted sting operations to rescue a young brother and sister from human trafficking in Colombia.

“Child trafficking is a global crisis that knows no borders, affecting millions of innocent lives each year. It is a brutal manifestation of greed, exploitation and disregard for the most vulnerable among us,” said Tingog Party-list Rep. Yedda Marie K. Romualdez, Committee on Accounts chairperson.

Supporting Rep. Romualdez in the joint project is her fellow Tingog party-list representative, Rep. Jude Acidre.

“We firmly believe that it is our collective duty to protect our children and ensure that they grow up in an environment where their rights are upheld and their dreams are nurtured,” Rep. Romualdez added.

Representing the Committee on the Welfare of Children for the joint project is BWH Party List Rep. Angelica Natasha Co, incumbent chairperson of the panel.

Rep. Romualdez chaired the same committee in the 18th Congress.

As part of the initiative, Tingog likewise gave cash donations to four non-government organizations providing shelter and related social services to children, youth and women who were victims of trafficking, other forms of abuse and neglect.

Recipients of the donation include the First Love International Ministries, Inc., Voice of the Free Foundation, Inc.-Center of Hope, St. Mary Euphrasia Integrated Development Foundation, Inc., and the Sanghaya Foundation, Inc.

Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez, leader of the 311-member House of Representatives, and several other lawmakers graced the screening of the movie at SM Megamall Cinema 11 in Mandaluyong City to manifest their support for the project.

He commended the two House panels for their joint project as he also urged the public to support the campaign against child trafficking.

“As a society, we must unite to break the chains of child trafficking and ensure a brighter future for our children.

Together, we can build a world where every child can thrive, safe from the clutches of traffickers,” Speaker Romualdez said.

“Our collective action today will determine the course of countless young lives tomorrow,” Romualdez added.

He said the special screening of the movie highlights the necessity to further strengthen laws against the trafficking of persons, particularly of women and children.

Released on July 4, 2023 by Angel Studios, “Sound of Freedom” is considered one of the most successful independent films in history, grossing over $210 million at the worldwide box office against its $14.5 million budget.