2018 International Nonprofit Professional of the Year: Michelle Winser
Destiny Rescue (Australia)
Michelle, a busy mom of three and a wife, balances her family with her passion and life-mission to rescue, restore and re-integrate sexually enslaved children who have suffered from the traumatic experiences of human trafficking.
At Destiny Rescue Team, she nurtures, engages and empowers her team and has created an environment of trust and fun—despite the many challenges the team faces on a daily basis. She is very hands-on with the team in Australia fundraising to fund the rescue, restoration and re-integration programs and with the international frontline teams who develop trusting relationships with mamasans, pimps and victims to gather intelligence for future raids.
“She has made [such a difference] to the lives of many children, and she is loved. A perfect example is Pansar. Michelle was out there at her rescue in Thailand when Pansar was just 13 years old and pulled out of a brothel. Once a damaged child, Pansar now manages a cafe in Chiang Rai, is married and has a baby girl. Michelle is still a part of their lives, visiting every few months and celebrating with them various milestones.”
During her time at Destiny Rescue, she has helped secure a number of major private grants and has contributed to converting many one-time donors into recurring donors. She has an ability to engage people of all backgrounds and has been instrumental in expanding the organization’s projects to two crisis centers around the world. Michelle inspires all around her and has found true happiness and fulfillment in her work.