What is Women Make the Difference Around the World?
Our team was blessed to attend this benefit in September of 2021. It was an opportunity to support our local sex trafficking organizations, StreetLightUSA and Phoenix's Dream Center. Also in attendance was the Rapha International who does international work in Cambodia, Haiti, and Thailand.
Upon arrival to this event, many men and women came together to celebrate different countries with their traditional dance. The significance of this presents that each country is struck with these crimes and it is a world wide disease. We must come together not only as a community, but as the world.
Once festivities ended, attendees were able to learn more about each organization and their work.
"StreetLightUSA is a 501(c)(3) Arizona Qualified Foster Care Organization (QFCO), founded in 2009, with the mission to transition adolescent girls from trauma to triumph. The StreetLightUSA campus is comprised of well-appointed cottages able to serve 34 residents. Our services are provided at two tiers: the Sanctuary provides residential behavioral healthcare to those suffering the most acute symptoms of trauma and Lighted Path is a group home offering trauma-informed enhanced support services to help girls continue on their journey of healing and recovery. In addition, Prestige Academy supports the academic needs of both programs. Since opening its doors, StreetLightUSA has served more than 1,300 individuals."
"Phoenix Dream Center is a 501(c)(3) Arizona Qualified Charitable Organization, and part of a network of Dream Center’s with a heart to Find a Need and Fill it, Find a Hurt and Heal, providing care and services in more than 270 communities.
The Phoenix based human trafficking program has served more than 600 women since 2009 and can serve up to 48 women at any time, including 12 babies for the nearly 30% of women who enter our program experiencing a crisis pregnancy.
These young women are served in 22 luxury apartment-style rooms in a trauma-informed care model using a family oriented mode of care."
"In 2003, Rapha International launched their program for children who had been rescued from slavery and sexual exploitation. After more than a decade of growth, Rapha International is now an international aftercare program which has won the favor of the governments in the countries in which it works. It is an organization which practices excellence in the standards of caring for children who have been rescued from traumatic situations. The Rapha International model is to find native people who are qualified and passionate about combating the issues of child slavery and sexual exploitation in their own countries, and equipping them to combat on behalf of these children. Rapha embraces a trauma-informed care model and provides Counseling & Medical services, Education & Training and Social Work & Legal Advocacy for children who have fallen victim to sexual exploitation.
Rapha International operates four aftercare programs in Battenbang, Cambodia, Siem Reap, Cambodia, Chang Mai, Thailand and Haiti. Each aftercare campus gives child survivors of sex trafficking and sexual exploitation the chance to reclaim their lost childhood. Each day girls are treated with love and value instead of abuse and neglect. The aftercare campuses are staffed by trained experts from the local community who understand the culture and know how to work with children through comprehensive and trauma-informed care. By walking with these girls on their healing journey, Rapha is helping them reach a life of sustainable freedom.
In addition to operating aftercare programs for survivors of sex trafficking and exploitation, Rapha International provides prevention in the kids club program by reaching out to impoverished communities where children are likely to be victimized. There are currently three Kids Club locations: one in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, one in Battambang, Cambodia and another in Mae Sot, Thailand. Together there are more than 800 children sponsored each year. Through the aftercare and kids club programs Rapha International is making a difference in the lives of hundreds of children in Asia, and setting them on a path of success."
How We Came Together
As a community, we were able to raise money to give support to sex trafficking victims such as room makeovers, scholarships, and vespas. Some things may not be seen as necessary, but these survivors are reentering society and they do not know normal anymore. A girl receiving a newly decorated room can help change her perspective about being located at safe housing. It is important to give these survivors a sense of normalcy, a sense of love.
We were honored as an organization to support girls in education. A value of MY I.D. is to continue schooling and get a well-rounded education. This could be the only constant in a survivor's life and it is important to help them chase their dreams through school.
MY I.D. is grateful for this opportunity to come together with our local community to raise not only funds, but to raise awareness for these organizations.