The Oasis Projekt
The Oasis Projekt exists to break the chains of slavery found in human trafficking, raise awareness of the issue, and bring healing to those affected.
Currently, The Oasis Projekt is raising funds to open a brand new safe home/rehabilitation facility, The Oasis Ranch, which will provide a safe harbor for those rescued from human trafficking. Upon opening our facility, we will offer healing and restoration on many levels through therapy, tutoring, mentoring, educational, physical and spiritual development, essential life-skills training, outdoor activities (including equestrian therapy and more), encouragement and development of hobbies and interests, comprehensive case management, access to quality medical care and support services, including post-placement follow up. We exist to bring healing and freedom in a loving and safe environment.
We will be comprised of full-time professionals and volunteers alike, all who share the same passion and broken hearts for the beautiful souls who have been so unjustly affected by human trafficking. If you would like information on joining us, please press the 'CONTACT' button below:
To make a one-time donation or become part of our special group of monthly givers, please press the "DONATE" button. Your financial generosity will help us make The Oasis Ranch a reality!
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To find out about how The Oasis Projekt came to be, please continue reading below!
We exist to bring healing and freedom in a loving and safe environment.
In 2008, The Oasis Projekt founder Dug Shelby traveled as a videographer with Nick Vujicic’s ‘Life Without Limbs’ to several countries. While in Mumbai, India, the ‘Life Without Limbs’ group spent time with K.K. Devaraj and his organization, ‘Bombay Teen Challenge.’ There, they witnessed the amazing work Devaraj was doing in the Kathmanpura, or ‘Red Light’ district of Mumbai. Running a rehabilitation facility for rescued victims of human trafficking, Bombay Teen Challenge also ran the only health clinic and HIV clinics in the Red Light district, as well as an amazing children’s shelter for kids of trafficked sex workers in the area. Children miles from the facilities knew Devaraj as “Uncle.” They knew he was on their side, fighting for them.
Dug was profoundly impacted by this experience. The things he saw, the people he met, and the conversations he had moved him to want to help, but he didn’t really know how. Just your everyday average guy, he hadn’t even heard of human trafficking until being dropped right in the middle of one of the most brutally shocking areas for sex trafficking anywhere.
In 2010, while on a short hike, Dug felt an answer to how he could help: hike the Pacific Crest Trail, a trail that stretches 2,650 from the border of California and Mexico and runs to British Columbia, Canada. Ten months later,
Dug was toeing the sand in Mexico, touching the PCT monument and heading northward to Canada with just a pack on his back. The first 1,000 miles he was blessed to hike with some amazing people, while the second 1,000 miles he hiked solo. Both were vitally important, and led him to realize that he needed to go ‘bigger:’ he realized he needed to start a non-profit to be able to reach more people. He got off the trail after walking the length of California and a good chunk of Oregon, and began the process of creating what would become ‘The Oasis Projekt.’
While going back to work and beginning to think through how to build a non-profit, Dug took some time with the sponsors of his hike. One sponsor, Gen Shimizu of Yama Mountain Gear, had sponsored Dug with his shelters on the hike, and Gen shared that Dug had inspired him to do his own adventure to benefit victims of human trafficking. Gen’s adventure, unicycling the Great Divide Trail, inspired Dug to make his next effort to raise awareness for trafficking victims to be on two wheels. He decided to ride the most unusual bike he could find: a bamboo recumbent bicycle hand made in Porto Allegra, Brazil by Klaus Volkmann, a professional musician with a deep sense of adventure and artistry.
Taking off from the Pacific Ocean in San Diego, Dug pedaled along the southern border of the United States, sharing his photos and the adventure through social media, and personally speaking with over 3,500 people about the issue of human trafficking. Along the way he returned lost wallets and cell phones he found on the side of the road, rescued an abused runaway dog, tried not to become a hood ornament for a speeding motor vehicle, and made many new friends. He would gather media attention by sending out a press release a few days from the next big town, and would even pull over when he saw news crews filming, and just ask if they wanted a story. After seeing the curious-looking bicycle made of wood, and hearing Dug’s story, the cameras would roll. Dug began to see how much one regular person could do, and how people were so willing to help in so many ways.
Six weeks later, Dug was standing in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Florida, tears in his eyes. He knew he had made a difference.
Four months after returning home from the cross country bike ride, on March 17th, 2014, The Oasis Projekt became a reality, gaining its 501(c)3 + L.L.C. status.
Three years and four months after getting the idea while hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, The Oasis Projekt was a reality!
THE 3 PEAKS
The focus now shifted from doing things on his own to doing things with other people. While researching for ideas, he came across an event in the United Kingdom called the “UK 3 Peaks Challenge.” Hiking up the tallest mountain in each of Scotland, England and Wales - in 24 hours or less - it seemed like a great way to raise awareness and funds, and he knew immediately that that was going to be the first official Oasis Projekt event.
In October of 2014, the first team of 3 Peaks from the Oasis Projekt touched down in Scotland, and put up a valiant effort on the 3 Peaks before extreme weather & dangerous lightning derailed our effort to conquer the mountains. Dug huddled the team together half way up Wales Mt. Snowdon, whipped by heavy wind, frozen sleet and too-close-for-comfort lightning strikes, and shared his reservations about continuing up the mountain. He told each of them that they were heroes long before they ever stepped foot on the plane to fly to the U.K., and that we’d end the 3 Peaks attempt to be able to hike again another day. If there were tears shed, they didn’t last long. These heroes had done so much to further awareness of human trafficking, and I knew The Oasis Projekt would be coming back again.
On returning from the United Kingdom, Dug felt a desire to streamline his personal life to better fund the non-profit, and to keep his housing needs as flexible as possible. He decided to buy an old vintage school bus that was up for auction and convert it into both his full-time home and the temporary headquarters of the Oasis Projekt.
The Oasis Projekt is currently focused entirely on creating a safe home/rehabilitation center for rescued human trafficking victims. A place they can heal from their experiences, a place they can realize their full worth, their gifts and talents, and know what real, authentic love is, and how they can learn to live to their full potential without the chains of the past.
We are in the beginning stages of this process. A complete website redesign, a search for just the right property in just the right place, and beginning to put our ears to the ground for just the right staff, prayer team, financial backers and support team is all in progress, and we’re so excited!
Look around the website, check out our Twitter/Facebook pages, and feel free to shoot us a message or a phone call. We’d love to talk to you about ways you can be involved, how to pray for us, and what we can pray for you for as well.