The most important outcome from this grant is there are more sex trafficking survivors than ever before getting jobs that bring them dignity and provide for their needs. Previously, survivors struggled to find employers that understood the background they’ve come from and the amount of trauma they’ve experienced. Now, SAFE’s partner BEST (Businesses Ending Slavery and Trafficking) has built and is growing a network of employers who want to hire survivors and are willing to have their managers trained, so they can better understand a survivors’ plight and therefore onboard them well as an employee, etc. In addition, survivors are getting resume help, interview training, etc. so they are ready to go to work. It’s a win on both sides of the equation and the survivors who are now employed in healthy jobs will never have to sell their bodies again.
So far, in each of these three programs:
▪ Jobs for Survivors – # of employers participating in the SAFE jobs initiative = 11
▪ Jobs for Survivors – 93 survivors employed + 81 coached or trained for employment = 174 survivors in or moving toward healthy jobs (program started in May)
▪ Housing for Survivors = 6 survivors receiving housing assistance so they can live in their own apartments (program started in June)
▪ Direct Client Assistance = 46 victims/survivors of sex trafficking provided for (since March) In each of these cases, survivors are thriving. They’re working in dignified employment; getting financial assistance to attain safe housing as they get on their feet; and getting bus passes, shoes, gas cards, eviction assistance help, utility bill help, etc. through client assistance funds. If a survivor isn’t able to get even one of these things, they could end up back “in the life” of prostitution, and back with their pimps who will beat them up and then sell their bodies 10-15 times/day again. Zarmada’s funds are definitely helping survivors (and our community) flourish!