Ilonka Deaton, Co-Founder of Voices United USA
Growing up in South Africa, Ilonka's journey led her to the U.S. to devote her life and voice to ministry.
Held in sexual slavery bondage in South Africa for 5 years through the threat of her and her family’s life, she is now rescued, redeemed and set free, and is a healthy, full of life, complete women in Jesus Christ. Ilonka sings and speaks to audiences across the US to encourage them through the love of Jesus Christ and to remind them that their stories matter. Her inspiring message is one of victorious life, freedom, tears, laughter, and hope for any wounded heart. Her appearances fund her own organization, Ilonka Ministries, which provides free counseling for hurting women.
Ilonka has performed worldwide as well as collaborating and performing on projects with Michael W. Smith, Rebecca St. James, Paul Coleman and Phil Keaggy, just to name a few. She has also served as a member of the Worship Team at Christ Community Church in Franklin, Tennessee for the past 7 years; has five albums: Fly, Holding On, Jesus Joy of Life, Ever & Ever, Classic Christmas, and her latest single Wash.
Ilonka is a member of The American Association of Christian Counselors and graduated in 2013 from Light University's Biblical Counseling Degree Program. In 2012 she and her husband Bill opened a free Counseling Center in the Franklin area for women, serving those who are often overlooked and under-resourced.
For the past several years Ilonka has worked with organizations such as World Vision, Women At Risk, Int. (WAR), Crisis Aid International and Bethany Christian Services as an artist and speaker. Ilonka has also publicly shared the power and love of Jesus Christ on multiple Christian Television Programs with her testimony and music, including a featured guest on the Steve Harvey Show as an advocate for women rescued from human trafficking.
She has recently released her book entitled 'Keeping Secrets', available through Amazon.com.