Cambodia: In-Depth

Our Core Values of Survivor Care and Program Outlines

“Our response is a strategic one – focus on excellence, professionalism and outcomes to help victims find healing, hope and justice.”

 

Athena Pond
Director of Survivor Care

Our Core Values of Survivor Care

 

Rescue is a process,
NOT an event.

 

There is almost always a single, sudden act of rescue during which a girl is removed from harm’s way but that event is only the first step on a journey of healing, restoration and empowerment.

A girl should not have to
carry the wounds
of her past

The goal of restorative care is not simply to address the trauma sustained but to help each individual move far beyond it. Each girl deserves the support needed to treat her trauma. Our holistic approach, with a comprehensive focus on individual needs, is the only effective response. Every girl in our program is empowered to live a whole, healthy life, free from the burden of her past exploitation.

Giving a girl choices
and a dream
restores her future

Each girl in our programs benefits from a nourishing environment that encourages and respects her choices. Our programs create bridges to opportunities that give her control over her life and provide the tools to realize her dreams. Each girl plays a prominent role in shaping and taking responsibility for her future so that she has a restored sense of dignity. With these practical and sustainable career and life skills we profoundly reduce the risk of re-trafficking.

Our Initial Assessment and Restorative Care Programs

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1

The Lighthouse Assessment Center

The Lighthouse opens its door to survivors on the very day they’re rescued for young girls aged 1-18, rescued from sex trafficking across Southeast Asia. Our six to eight-week intensive program provides a soft landing as we determine each girl’s long term needs.

Hope for Justice provide immediate crisis support, family and community assessments, trauma-informed interventions and crisis medical and dental care. We contribute to collaborative planning with government agencies and NGOs to prepare survivors for long-term services or reintegration with their communities and families. If it’s possible, our team then reunite a girl with her family. For those needing more intensive care we seek out the best residential programs.   

Using art therapy, play therapy, and group work each girl can begin to express her story and address trauma right away.

 

2The Dream Home

At the Hope for Justice Dream Home we provide girls rescued from trafficking aged 13-18 with a safe, loving, full-time place to live — we provide a home.

Each girl receives personalized care to heal from her past and provide opportunities for her future.  A girl who finds her home here finds a new beginning. She finds hope, with holistic trauma therapy, medical care, life skills training and sustainable career skills. Our mission is to help girls transition, through the power of a dream, from victim to survivor to world changer.

2The STAR House

The Hope for Justice STAR House is a step-down program for young women reintegrating to life on their own from shelter programs in Cambodia.

The program addresses key cultural, financial, emotional, and independent-living challenges for survivors of sex trafficking reintegrating into Cambodian society.

We provide support and services to empower residents to become independent adults. The STAR House is a safe living environment where young women are taught the life skills necessary to move beyond restoration and into empowerment.

 
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4

The Bridge Project

The Bridge Project serves to rebuild, strengthen, and restore the relationship of the survivor and her family, community, and society.

Years of experience have helped our team understand the family-related stress experienced by the girls in our care, so we know that an integral part of restoration for survivors is addressing family relationships.

The Bridge Project stands in the gap between survivors of sex trafficking and vital, reintegration and family reunification services. We offer comprehensive family-based services that go beyond supporting the survivor to bring strength and empowerment to the Cambodian family. If families and communities are given the support to make choices that meet their own basic needs in sustainable and empowering ways, they can avoid the extreme desperation that drives them to infringe on the rights of others in order to survive. We aim to stabilize families and protect siblings too. Our Social Work Team continues regular follow up with all of our recent graduates covering their job and social situations, providing guidance and connecting them with resources as needed.

Assistance may include: small business set up – school fees – advocacy with the police or village chiefs – short-term and emergency medical care – connections with local community services.

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The Shine Career School

We believe every girl is capable of achieving her dreams with the right support and encouragement.

At the Hope for Justice Shine Career School we don’t allow girls to settle for what society has told them they are capable of – like sewing and handy-crafts. We know they can do so much more.

We are the only NGO in Cambodia permitted by the government to offer every girl in our program intensive high school tutoring and classes, studying Khmer, English, math, science, and computer technologies, encouraging them to then go on to find her dream. We arrange training for rescued girls in any career field they choose and act to overcome the gap in training choices by making sure that wherever they go for training provides a high quality learning environment.  At Shine we also offer intensive high school tutoring, where girls can catch up on their education, go on to receive their diploma and then attend University if they choose. We also assist graduates in job placement or business start-up.

Shine mirrors all other parts of our program model by being fully social work-focused and trauma-informed. Our specialist staff is working toward healthy reintegration into Cambodian society for each girl and seeking to empower her through education and life skills training.

“When I first moved into the Dream Home I was angry and upset and had emotions that caused me a lot of pain. Hope for Justice helped me find my dream, to choose to become a chef. I went to culinary school and they helped me find my job, which I really love.”

Sanya*
Dream Home Graduate

*name changed to protect identity

 

Family

“The atmosphere was like a family which made me feel warm”

Amaya*