There will be an important message for Nebraska parents, guardians to grandparents and teachers shared Tuesday night at Westwood Church in Omaha. Members of the Set Me Free Project will hold an presentation on the dangers of sex trafficking and how to prevent children from falling victim. Guest speaker Bronwyn Zitka travels the state talking about her past as a victim of human trafficking.
Zitka says she met her ex-husband as a child and the two grew up together and were in the same youth group at church. When the two married when she was 18 and that is when her nightmare started.
Zitka says, “This man was a master manipulator. He had me convinced he was the only man I could trust. I couldn’t even trust my family. I was isolated to only trusting him, he began making me the bad guy as well. Anytime I would deny him anything, a phone conversation to explicit acts I was being cruel, selfish and unfair.”
Zitka says they ended up in Oklahoma which made matters worse because she was away from her friends and family. He was in the military and on deployment when she decided to join the military. During that time she met two women and shared some of her story.
Zitka says, “They were smart. They put two-and-two together. I would make excuses for him and justify his behavior. They literally took me by my hand to the drill sergeant’s office and told them she needs her phone and she needs a divorce. Then they had me on speaker phone say the words ‘I’m leaving you’ to this man. If I hadn’t met those two women I’d still be in that relationship.”
Zitka says she divorced in 2012 and continues to rebuild her life. She is going to school and hopes for a steady job and a family down the road.
The Set Me Free Project program will start at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday evening at Westwood Church, 132nd and West Center Road in Omaha. The public is invited. For more details, log on to setmefreeproject.net.