Not Today - new film spotlights human trafficking
New faith-based movie Not Today opens in cinemas across the US on Friday.
The film tells the story of privileged rich kid Caden Welles (Cody Longo) who embarks on a holiday to India expecting little more than partying and hedonism.
Things take an unexpected turn when he refuses to help a starving man and his little girl, only to discover later that the girl has been sold by the father out of desperation.
With his conscience irreversibly pricked and his mother and girlfriend praying for him all the while back home, Caden starts an unlikely search to find the girl and in the process discovers the dark world of human trafficking.
The film has been made by Friends Media, an arm of Friends Church of Yorba Linda, California, and also stars John Schneider (October Baby, Smallville, The Dukes of Hazzard), Shari Rigby (October Baby, The Bold and the Beautiful), Cassie Scerbo (Make It or Break It, Hot in Cleveland) and Walid Amini (Veep, NCIS).
Friends Church has already committed $20million to building 200 new schools for Dalit children in India.
Profits from Not Today will go towards the construction of more schools with the goal of building 1,000 in the next decade.
The UN Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking estimates the number of human trafficking victims worldwide at 27 million.
The organisation estimates the profits from all trafficked forced labour at $31.6 billion a year.
The number of children in India trapped in human trafficking as child prostitutes is believed to exceed 1.2 million.
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The Not Today soundtrack includes the song "What Love Can Do" by Kari Jobe.
"We all have to play a role and do our part to fight against the plague that affects 27 million people and growing," she says. "It's so incredibly dark, and I feel a responsibility to do what I can. Most of these victims are girls like me, and I can't imagine what life would be like in that place."
Church leaders are excited about the movie and the role it is playing in educating people about human trafficking.
"Our Christian faith compels us to lift our hands up with conviction and stretch our hands across with compassion," said Reverend Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference.
"Not Today moves us to reconcile sanctification with service, faith with action and righteousness with justice.
"Whether it's creating a firewall against a caste system that does not recognise the image of God in every human being or lifting a clarion call against human trafficking, Not Today is more than a movie. Not Today stands as a clarion call to do justice in the name of Jesus."
Watch the trailer here: