The thorns on a vine protect the rose. This is the concept Thorn has adopted and stayed true to. Thorn is a foundation that was created to fight against child abuse and child sex trafficking. For nearly a decade they have been saving children and raising awareness about this serious issue. With countless children being exposed to sexual abuse every, Thorn is here to ensure they have a fighting chance to survive.
In 2012, Thorn was founded with the assistance of co-founders Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore. It was soon after this that Thorn CEO Julie Cordua joined the team and began diving further into the issue of child sex trafficking. It was from this research they soon discovered a major common theme amongst the hideous crime. It was found that technology was the main contender in worsening child sex trafficking. Although the technology was the main problem, it was not used as the solution.
In response to this discovery, the Thorn team put all of their attention on investing in the potential life-saving solution of tech-led approaches to ending online child sexual abuse. In just two years, there was a shift in their model for long-term change.
Because much of child sex trafficking took place mostly online, Thorn began prototyping a product in 2014 to aid in identifying child sex trafficking victims who were sold on the internet. They developed the product on their own without the assistance of police or law enforcement. With this type of approach, they were able to get passed existing bureaucratic structures that often don’t allow access, data sharing, and collaboration.
Thorn became the first foundation to house an engineering and data science team focused solely on the pur[pose of developing new technologies fighting against online child sexual abuse. Through new and innovative technology, they are able to find a solution at a much faster rate than law enforcement alone.
Their Three Strategic Pillars
Thorn operates and deploys innovative solutions through its three strategic pillars: accelerating victim identification, equipping platforms, and empowering the public. With these pillars as their foundation, Thorn has been able to identify 10,081 kids who were victims of child sex trafficking in the past year alone. Thorn is a force to be reckoned with and will not stop until every child is safe from the horrors of sex trafficking.