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Our Story

To help trafficking survivors finally escape the trafficking cycle, ALIGHT connects them to a mobilized army of pro bono attorneys. With critical legal services, survivors can overcome legal problems that are insurmountable alone, enabling them to successfully gain independence and rebuild their lives in our community.

Why We Started

With a vision to empower every trafficking survivor to be able to connect to an attorney when needed, ALIGHT began as a project in 2014 and was incorporated as a Colorado 501(c)(3) nonprofit in March 2015. Marianna Kosharovsky, ALIGHT’s Founder and Executive Director, is an attorney who has directly represented survivors of sex and labor trafficking and contributed to multi-stakeholder meetings on law and technology at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe. Having worked on this issue since 2008 both in the US and abroad in Russia/Eastern Europe, she knew that something must be done and can be done if we put the varied, unique and time-sensitive needs of survivors – as they define them – at the center of what we offer as a solution.

Drawing on law, human trafficking and technology, the team at ALIGHT set about researching and designing a new model. Invitations to present our work at a 2017 United Nations Commission on the Status of Women human trafficking event, the Princeton Center for Information Technology Policy workshop on technology, ethics, and gender-based violence, the Freedom Network USA Conference and other venues reflect our leadership in this field.

A Proven Model of Impact

Breaking the Cycle

After years of research and development between 2014 and 2017, on February 1, 2017 ALIGHT launched a pilot with survivor-leader utilization and input in Denver to test and validate our concept. After showing strong results, implementation has expanded to cover additional geographic areas as ALIGHT’s capacity grows.

Since 2017, ALIGHT has helped human trafficking survivors on over 100 discrete, high-impact legal matters. These have ranged from taking down revenge porn to fighting for child custody and clearing criminal records accrued for crimes the survivor was forced to commit by their trafficker. ALIGHT has also helped beyond Colorado, including in South Dakota, California, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and other states. To learn more about our work, visit Our Solution.

“Before ALIGHT, we encountered systemic barriers to survivors accessing legal services. Finding a trauma-informed attorney for trafficking survivors just wouldn’t happen, and especially not quickly...we have seen survivors empowered and equipped to continue taking back control over their lives and laying foundations upon which bright futures are built.”

Megan LundstromSurvivor-Leader and Executive Director of Free Our Girls

What’s Next?

ALIGHT has completed the pilot stage of its development and is now scaling operations to provide full service in Colorado and lay the groundwork for future expansion to other states. The ALIGHT team has invested (and continues to contribute) thousands of volunteer hours to develop, test and refine a survivor-centric and scalable model of service delivery. Further, through years of problem-solving and iterating, ALIGHT has developed and documented the proper systems, processes, and protocols in new areas of professional collaboration between attorneys and community service organizations.

With each month, ALIGHT is seeing more and more survivors coming to us for help. We have seen a survivor from 2017 return who now needs advocacy on a housing matter. We have seen a new survivor who was referred to us by another survivor with the same problem.

Knowing that the ALIGHT model works and is needed, the question is: How can you be part of the effort to make this a success that reaches every survivor of human trafficking?

Join Us

We know there is much more work to be done. Join us to empower more human trafficking survivors on their path forward to the lives we all deserve.

Get Involved