Sam Inocencio serves as the National Director for International Justice Mission in the Philippines. IJM secures justice for victims of slavery, online sexual exploitation of children and other forms of violent oppression. IJM lawyers, community mobilizers, and aftercare professionals work with local governments to ensure victim rescue, to prosecute perpetrators and to strengthen the community and civic factors that promote functioning public justice systems.
Sam leads the Philippines’ two field offices in rescuing and restoring children who are victims of Online Sexual Exploitation (OSEC). Since starting as a lawyer for IJM Manila in 2003, Sam has helped hundreds of children and women receive justice in court, making justice possible for impoverished families who could not have afforded such strong advocacy on their own.
In 2006, Sam transitioned from Manila to Cebu to help start the new office there and to lead the young team of lawyers. Sam demonstrated his expertise in advocating for trafficking survivors not only through his work in the courtroom, but also through designing and executing a national-level advocacy plan with government agencies. After being promoted to serve as Deputy Director of IJM Cebu in 2009, Sam helped lead IJM into unprecedented partnerships with the government, including securing one of only three seats reserved for non-governmental organizations in the Philippines Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking. After just four years of IJM Cebu’s work with local authorities, independent researchers measured a 79% decrease in the availability of children for commercial sex. Sam returned to Manila to serve as Field Office Director in 2011. Then in 2016, he was appointed as the National Director of IJM Philippines.