Press Release (ePRNews.com) - WASHINGTON - Apr 29, 2018 - Who teaches children about the dangers of human trafficking, including meeting a stranger online? Who gives kids the tools to survive in this fast-paced world where they don’t know what information to trust?
Can children join the adults and become advocates and activists for this cause? The answer is yes.
Prevent Human Trafficking (PHT), the second oldest anti-trafficking group in the United States, and Radical Empathy Education Foundation (REEF), who uses interactive technology for education and awareness of human trafficking, are the first organizations in the world to use 360 video and VR to engage people in immersive experiences that create unforgettable memories and hopefully help bring this issue to life and connect with it in a real way.
Saturday, April 28th from 6-9pm, attendees of PHT’s 19th Annual Fundraiser can experience both of these one-of-a-kind products and enjoy an open bar and hors d’oeuvres. The fundraiser is being held at Mayer Brown LLP, 1999 K Street Northwest, Washington, DC 20006. Tickets are $19, in honor of their 19th Anniversary. Purchase tickets online: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/prevent-human-traffickings-pht-19th-anniversary-celebration-tickets-744861902
PHT works to raise awareness of and provide support to help those vulnerable to this epidemic. Christina Kiritz, the Founder / CEO of Prevent Human Trafficking, has led the charge into VR by directing and producing 360 degree videos that allow you to see the situation on the ground in Thailand.
“PHT is so proud to announce our partnership with REEF at our 19th Annual Gala. REEF is using cutting-edge gaming technology to raise awareness as well as teach children how it feels to be groomed and more susceptible to the people that would victimize them,” says Kiritz. She continued, “Combining our efforts seemed like a natural fit.”
Kiritz met Billy Joe Cain, the President of Radical Empathy Education Foundation, at South by Southwest (SXSW) in March of 2018 and that there was an immediate connection between their missions as well as a shared use of cutting edge virtual reality technology.
“When Christina told me she had directed and produced 360 video of trafficking victims, I knew we needed to team up with PHT to multiply our effectiveness. With PHT’s experience on the ground in DC and Thailand along with experience creating interactive content, it’s a perfect match,” Cain enthusiastically adds. “The stories Christina has captured are amazing and her use of this new technology is groundbreaking,” he said.
Virtual Reality is often referred to as “the ultimate empathy machine.” Jeremy Bailenson, director of Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab says “[R]esearch shows [VR] can have a deep effect on behavior.” University studies show that learning through VR makes people 44% more confident about what they know and people who learn using VR are 43% more likely to seek out more information.
PHT’s immersive VR experience is filmed in 360 video, which is where a video recording is captured from every direction is recorded at the same time. The experience is filmed so that a viewer is in complete control of what they see, providing an intimate viewing experience that can affect people in a very personal way.
REEF’s TRAPPED: A VR Detective Story is an interactive virtual reality experience that puts you in the shoes of a victim, Lisa, as she shares what it’s like to be victimized by the horrible travesty that is sex trafficking.
Both experiences are available for the virtual reality headset, HTC Vive, a room-scale system that allows for unparalleled user immersion. HTC Vive has partnered with PHT and REEF to support their efforts of spreading awareness and fighting this epidemic.
ABOUT PREVENT HUMAN TRAFFICKING
Prevent Human Trafficking (PHT) is a Washington, D.C. based non-profit organization founded in 1999 working to build a bridge between Thailand and the United States to empower individuals, organizations and agencies to tackle the root causes of human trafficking through direct support, technical assistance – including transmedia to document, promote and raise support for key programs. To learn more, visit https://www.preventhumantrafficking.org/
ABOUT RADICAL EMPATHY EDUCATION FOUNDATION
Radical Empathy Education Foundation (REEF) is an Austin-based non-profit currently developing immersive Virtual Reality (VR) experiences dedicated to the eradication of one of the 21st century’s greatest injustices: Human Trafficking. To support REEF’s work, please visit www.radicalempathyfoundation.org/donate
For more information, contact: Billy Joe Cain at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Radical Empathy Education Foundation