Delaware County residents looking to learn more about human trafficking or volunteer to help survivors can attend a workshop in Delaware later this month.

Delaware County residents looking to learn more about human trafficking or volunteer to help survivors can attend a workshop in Delaware later this month.

The Delaware County Against Human Trafficking Coalition will conduct its Human Trafficking 101 Workshop starting at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 19, at the Greenwood Lake Camp and Retreat Center, 340 Lake St.

Brande Urban, director of collective impact for the United Way of Delaware County, said coalition officials will teach attendees the basics about human trafficking, such as how and where it takes place and what effects it has on survivors.

Urban said survivors sometimes go through thousands of instances of abuse before they escape their traffickers.

"The big thing I always tell people is: This is a trauma like no other," she said.

The workshop is a required first step for people who want to volunteer at the Salvation Army of Central Ohio's safe house for trafficking survivors.

Urban said interest in the topic in the county is high after the arrest and trial of Estella and Qing Xu earlier this year. In October, each was sentenced to 10 years in prison after a jury found the sisters guilty of running a prostitution ring out of massage parlors in Columbus, Powell and Worthington.

Urban said the case reminded Delaware County residents human trafficking is not a problem just in big cities and foreign countries.

"I think this is another tipping point for people to say: Yes, this is still here, and we can do something about it," she said.

Urban said coalition members -- particularly the Salvation Army -- provided needed resources for the employees forced to work at the massage parlors after the businesses were shut down in January.

Workshop attendees who want to volunteer at the Salvation Army's safe house will need to complete eight additional hours of training. Urban said the volunteers then will be called in to keep survivors company or run errands for them.

"We have interest, but we continually need new people," she said.

The Delaware County Against Human Trafficking Coalition was founded in 2013 after officials at the local branches of the Salvation Army and United Way joined forces to address the problem. Other founding partners include the Delaware County Prosecutor's Office, the Delaware County Sheriff's Office, the Delaware Police Department and Helpline of Delaware and Morrow Counties.