Golf tournament to benefit sex trafficking victims

Eagle Point, Ore. —  Dozens of golfers took advantage of Friday’s weather to hit the links. It wasn’t all fun and games, though. They were there to help fight human trafficking, a growing concern in the region.

Normally, the game of golf is played just for fun. But Friday, for the 23rd year in a row, a group of golfers played for a good cause.

“Over the years, this event has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for various charities around southern Oregon,” Brad Bennington said. Bennington is the executive officer of Builders Association Southern Oregon.

One of those charities – Redemption Ridge.

“Our tournament this year is so special because it’s a successful conclusion of a four-year campaign to help a new non-profit that helps young women get off the ground,” he said.

Redemption Ridge helps rescue and rehabilitate young women who were once victims of sex trafficking.

“Four years ago, we took it to the board, we said we’ve got to do something to help these young women,” he said.

That’s when the Builders Association of Southern Oregon partnered with Redemption Ridge and donated labor to help build ‘Grace House.’

“The first thing that we realized that they needed was they needed a safe place to stay,” he said.

Four years later, Grace House is open, and ready to welcome its first tenant this summer.

“Today, we have the only other safe house in the state of Oregon,” he said.

A house that was a team effort by generous community individuals.

“It’s local people helping other people. This isn’t being done by the federal government, or the state government, or some city government. What you see here is people reaching out to other people, and just giving their time and their finances to make someone else’s life better,” he said.

NBC5 News asked organizers if there are plans for a 24th annual golf tournament for next year – the answer was overwhelmingly ‘yes.’

If you’d like to learn more about the builders classic tournament, you can visit Builders Association Southern Oregon.

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