I am excited to share with you that 2012 is off to a great start! As you know, in 2011, The Home Foundation officially became Abolition International. Re-branding has allowed us to further define our mission and goals, and to demonstrate our commitment to helping develop quality aftercare programs around the world through the Shelter Association. This association creates a network of those committed to aftercare and establishes opportunities for collaboration and education.
If you’ve been following our work, you know that this year we are focusing on increasing the services currently available to those rescued from sex trafficking and exploitation. Through the To Be Free campaign, we are partnering with quality aftercare projects around the world to help expand services and facilities that will enable each program to care for more sex trafficking survivors. Through your generosity we have given over $80,000 to aftercare since January 2012. Our goal is to raise $350,000 to help expand services so that those affected by this evil can experience true healing in Christ.
Below learn more about the first four aftercare projects that are a part of the To Be Free campaign. These four expansion projects will extend quality aftercare to over 38 new girls rescued from sex trafficking!
Please consider joining the To Be Free campaign as a monthly donor and you will receive the three-strand bracelet as a token of your commitment to freedom. Also, share with your family and friends the To Be Free stories from our aftercare partners. These accounts put faces to the countless others who remain unseen, longing to be free.
As always, we appreciate your prayers and your support. Partner with us during this first phase of To Be Free and together we can help expand aftercare in Moldova, Cambodia, and the United States.
Stacia Freeman – Executive Director
Cambodia – Transitions
Located between Thailand and Vietnam, the sex tourism region of the world, Cambodia has had a growing problem with child sex trafficking. A UNICEF survey concluded that 35 percent of Cambodia’s sex slaves are children under the age of 16. Children who believe they were born to be used and have given up all hope for any of their dreams.
James and Athena Pond founded Transitions Global in 2006 and launched the Dream Home in Phnom Penh, Cambodia as a holistic center for underage sex trafficking survivors to heal from their trauma and receive independent living skills, therapy, and modern career training. The Dream Home assists girls in leading healthy and productive lives outside of the aftercare program and give them the tools to dream again about their futures.
Currently, the Dream Home cares for 12 Cambodian and Vietnamese girls between the ages of 13 and 18, but the home is capable of receiving up to 20. As a part of To Be Free, it is our goal to raise the $100,000 needed to expand the Dream Home and enable Transitions to receive and restore 8 new girls rescued from sex trafficking.
Moldova – Beginning of Life
Moldova is the poorest country in Europe and with more then 30% of the nation’s children being “social orphans,” young girls are easy targets for traffickers. It’s estimated that nearly 30,000 girls and women have disappeared without a trace.
In Moldova, Beginning of Life ministry provides an aftercare home and program for young women rescued from sex trafficking. The home cares for each survivor with quality counseling, spiritual support, art therapy, life skills, and vocational training depending on each girl’s individual needs. The home is dedicated to giving each girl exactly what she needs to pursue her dreams and to be excited about her future.
Currently Beginning of Life’s aftercare home cares for 8 young women. As a part of To Be Free, it is our goal raise the additional $32,000 needed to help expand the program that will allow BOL to receive 9 new girls rescued from sex trafficking.
Atlanta, Georgia – Wellspring Living
With a giant international airport and a booming commercial sex industry, Atlanta, GA is one of the top cities in the United States for child sex trafficking.
Wellspring Living cares for sex trafficking survivors and guides them out of the dark and into a bright future. The program uses innovative counseling and education techniques to offer hope, healing, and restored dignity to girls rescued from sex trafficking. By providing counseling, group therapy, education, life skills and vocational training, family reunification as well as spiritual care, Wellspring Living helps exploitation survivors heal and move forward.
Wellspring Living is opening a new home for young girls called the Empowered Living Program. The new home will house 11 young ladies recently rescued from sex slavery. Through To Be Free, it is our goal to raise $60,000 to help Wellspring Living establish this new home and bring freedom and restoration to these girls.
Columbus, Ohio – Gracehaven
With three major metropolitan cities, intersecting interstates, and a large population of runaway youth, child sex trafficking continues to rise in Ohio. Centrally located, the city of Columbus is an ideal location for a quality aftercare home for minors rescued from sex trafficking.
Led by Dr. Jeffrey Barrows, Gracehaven has been working the past 4 years to develop a quality aftercare home that brings hope, restoration, and rehabilitation to victims of child sex trafficking. Once opened, the aftercare facility will care for 10 adolescent girls from all over Ohio and will provide them with a safe place to be restored along with valuable counseling, education, and life skills training. The whole team at Gracehaven has spent years researching, developing, and establishing the organization to create a solid foundation for the aftercare home.
Through To Be Free, it is our goal to help raise the remaining $70,000 needed to fully open Gracehaven in Columbus, Ohio in 2012.