The project I run in Enactus is called TR:ust. It took months to name it, and sometimes I still find things labeled “Eastern European Project”. The name stands for Transform Romania: Uniting Survivors of Trafficking, which may be the single most ridiculous name I have ever given anything. Its cheesy and presumptuous, fitting the Enactus strategy of naming projects quite well. It is however, adorable, and looks great on business cards. Unfortunately, it also autocorrects to “TR:just” every single time and makes me want to tear my hair out. But returning to the point of this post, I run a project called TR:ust.
TR:ust is an Enactus Lancaster project that aims to empower survivors of human trafficking in Arad Romania through entrepreneurial action.
We are a group of university students with a passion for using sustainable business to address systematic issues in our community and around the world.
We are applying these ideas and values to human trafficking by running awareness campaigns on our campus, and working with NGO’s in Arad, Romania to develop long term enterprises that will create education opportunities and employment for trafficking survivors.
This is the ‘about’ page of our website, and though it is the fluffiest explanation I could give, its all true. If you had told me at the beginning of the year that I would be running what is, at its core, an international NGO, I would have laughed. Through in its a social enterprise, and I would have called you crazy. I don’t do business, I don’t understand it, and I never would have said I wanted to. I can’t say I understand it now, I am 100% pretending I know what I’m doing every day of the week. But somewhere along the way I learned how to write a business plan, or at least delegate the actual business parts to some of my amazing project members who study business and are far more qualified than me to figure this out.
Its 6 months later, and TR:ust is my baby, the project that was ‘hey lets do a project with human trafficking survivors in eastern Europe’ and is now an actual plan and a conference and a trip to Romania. I spend an incredible amount of my time on this project, and consistently get asked if this is my job. The fact that I a full time student who does this as a side project shocks people, including me sometimes. But this project has been worth the sleepless nights and skyrocketing stress levels.