By Tammy Reese | Friday, January 5, 2024 | 10:39 AM ET
January, marked as Human Trafficking Awareness month, brings forth stories that demand our attention. In a world clouded by the darkness of exploitation, emerge voices that pierce through, bringing hope and resilience. Meet Simboli, also known as Monique Smith — an award-winning author, advocate, and survivor, committed to illuminating the plight of missing and exploited children.
Monique’s odyssey began in the shadows of her own abduction and unidentified missing status. Escaping a life of abuse and trauma, she embarked on a transformative journey, discovering her purpose — to be a voice for the voiceless and a relentless force against human trafficking. As a speaker, Monique’s infectious positivity and unwavering determination captivate audiences, shedding light on society’s darkest corners and inspiring change. Recognized by esteemed organizations such as the NAACP and featured in prominent media outlets like People Magazine, HBO and the Baltimore Times. Her personal documentary, “The Longest Living Jane Doe,” stands as a testament to her strength and unwavering spirit. Beyond recognition, Monique, a mother of four, understands the vulnerability of children.
Through advocacy, she strives for a world where no child goes missing or falls victim to exploitation. Join Simboli Monique Smith on her mission to eradicate human trafficking and amplify the voices that often go unheard. In an exclusive interview, Monique shares her inspirations, beliefs in work-life balance, and advice for aspiring entrepreneurs. Her story, as the Longest Living Jane Doe, challenges assumptions — proving that all missing children aren’t dead, urging families to persist until recovery.
Monique’s proudest accomplishment, as a survivor, author, and director, elevates humanity through hope and resilience.
Please enjoy our interview!
What is the inspiration behind your advocacy?
Monique: Everyone deserves to live the life granted them. I’ve used my personal story to fight against those who commit harmful acts against human rights. My inspiration is being a voice for the voiceless.
What message would you like to convey to survivors of human trafficking who may be watching or reading this interview?
Monique: There is hope after hurt, there’s success after sabotage, and plenty of space to thrive after trauma. So be patient with yourself. Tap into and take advantage of every resource available allowing you to transform into normalcy, granting you the ability to live the story you want told.
What is your proudest business accomplishment?
Monique: As a survivor of a child abduction, trafficking, and sexual abuse, becoming a self published award winning author and director was an extremely proud accomplishment. My story continues to assist with elevating humanity via hope and resiliency. My story has been featured on major platforms like HBO and CrimeCon.
What’s your best piece of advice for aspiring and new entrepreneurs?
Monique: The work is required and once you tap into your very own resilience the sky's the limit. That’s in both business and for your personal development. The results are often fuel for the continued journey.
Monique calls for individuals and communities to engage actively, donate, volunteer, and become advocates against human trafficking. Be apart of Monique’s mission and get connected by visiting https://www.knownasmonique.com/
Owner of Visionary Minds Public Relations and Media, Tammy Reese is an award-winning writer and journalist best known for landing major interviews with Angela Bassett, Sharon Stone, Sigourney Weaver, Laurence Fishburne, Geena Davis, Billy Porter, Morris Chestnut, Nelly, Mona Scott Young, Giancarlo Esposito, Luke Evans, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Jennifer Connelly, Joseph Sikora, Meagan Good, Leon, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Phylicia Rashad, Omar Epps, Courtney Kemp, Vivica A Fox, Ryan Coogler, and so many more.
She is a proud member of ForbesBLK as well as New York Women in Film and Television.
Other articles by Tammy Reese in Vision & Purpose LifeStyle Magazine.