Turning Anger into Action

Calling Guardians encourages businesses to join the fight against human trafficking .

Human trafficking affects an estimated 50 million people–largely women and children–around the globe. Generating more than $150 billion every single year, it’s one of the top three criminal industries in the world.

Ryan Goodman first heard these startling statistics in 2019 while sitting at lunch with Than Baardson, Cofounder and CEO of Unseen. White knuckles gripping the sides of the table, Goodman listened as Baardson dove into a detailed explanation of the global issue of human trafficking. 

Goodman’s anger lingered long after that lunch. Then, he decided to harness it into something greater: action.

“You can be mad all you want, but that's not going to help anybody unless you're going to get involved and do something,” Goodman said. “You can’t just sit and have a conversation like that and then be passive.”

Goodman, who served as Cofounder and President of BNG Holdings, Inc. at the time, knew that an issue as immense as human trafficking was too much for one person to tackle alone. So, he turned to his business partner, Brady Nash. 

Goodman and Nash put their heads together and brainstormed a way to use their positions as business leaders to take a stand against human trafficking. Along with BNG’s Chief People Officer, Jeff Vanlaningham, they came up with an idea that could engage their entire company with minimal effort from their employees using a recurring revenue model. 

They started by setting aside one dollar each day per employee at BNG to donate to Unseen–and the impact they saw was amazing. 

“It let our team know that just because they're showing up and they've made that choice to work with us, they're able to make an impact in the world,” Goodman said. “It was a great way to create comradery around doing something great as a team.”

Inspired by the impact they saw both on and as a result of their employees, Goodman and Nash decided to take their idea a step further. 

“It was a light bulb moment of, why would we keep this to ourselves? What if we started inviting other businesses to utilize this same strategy we’re using to make an impact?” Goodman said. “This could be a movement, rather than something that’s just us.”

The result was Calling Guardians, a turn-key employee engagement program fueling the fight against human trafficking and its root causes through Unseen. Like the guardians of ancient Rome, Goodman and Nash are going to fight. Now, they are calling other businesses to do the same.

Goodman sees Calling Guardians as a “frictionless” solution for any business wanting to make a difference in the world while engaging with their employees in a meaningful way. All it takes is the click of a button.

“All you have to do is fill out a simple online form with your payment information, the number of employees, and your preferred contribution–1, 3, or 5 dollars a day,” Goodman said. “You’re compressing that anger and emotion and making an impact today, all within a five-minute time frame.”

Once a business has taken the pledge and submitted their information, contributions will be made automatically. Then, they’ll receive quarterly updates on the work that Unseen is doing with their partners around the world, giving employees an opportunity to see their investment in action.

To date, Calling Guardians has already garnered interest from more than 20 companies, ranging anywhere from six employees to 600–and the snowball continues to roll and grow as more business leaders discover their mission.

With the dark cloud of human trafficking looming large over our world, it’s easy to feel helpless, hopeless, and, like Goodman, angry. Goodman hopes that Calling Guardians can serve as a reminder that all of us can make a difference, just one dollar at a time.

“This is a seemingly insurmountable problem. We can’t do everything, but this is something we can do,” Goodman said. “I don't know what the end game is, but I know that I just need to do the next right thing. That’s what I'm called to do.”

We can all do the next right thing. Join Ryan Goodman and Calling Guardians and take a stand against human trafficking at [callingguardians.com]