The Samarian Women serves as the convener of the Maryland Coalition, a state-wide initiative against Human Trafficking supported by local organizations and the US Adminstration of Children and Families (DHHS). Our activities to combat this heinous practice include:
Community Vigilance and Outreach
YOU may save a life, simply by being aware and vigilant in your own community, industry or workplace. We are developing a cadre of citizens who will work in cooperation with local and national law enforcement to provide local-level survelliance and reporting.
The Samaritan Women supports a team of street ministers who reach out to women enslaved in the world of sex entertainment and street-level prostitition. We endeavor to build trust and relationship with these women to guide them into programs that will lead them out of addiction, crime, and towards the fullness of life that God intended for them. Persons interested in Outreach ministry should contact Tom for more information and to receive proper training.
Awareness and Prevention
This is a crime that proliferates in the dark, underground, online, and in a sea of lies and deception. Our mission is to open our hearts and eyes to the need for change and to prevent future victimization through awareness and vigilance. The Maryland Rescue & Restore Coalition offers a variety of presentations and workshops on the topic of human trafficking that are ideal forchurches, schools, youth groups, universities, trade and professional societies, and workplaces. We have a variety of awareness programs:
- SERMON (15-20min) – an ecumenical sermon on social justice and the realities of HT in our world and community. Emphaiss is on the Biblical mandate to be aware and to engage.
- ADULT PRESENTATION (1-2 hours) – an overview of the definition of HT and the realities of trafficking. Includes a profile of the victims, perpetrators, and suggested actions teeps. Can be customized for your specific geography or industry.
- YOUTH PRESENTATION (60-90min) – delivered by our young adult corps, this presentation is specifically geared to middle and high school populations to make them aware of HT and their own vulnerability. Hosting organizations are recommended to obtain parental permission for this session.
- WORKSHOP (4 hours) – deeper exploration of the definitions, practices, profile of victms and perpetrators, and challenges for care-giving. Includes an overview of the Demand side and specific examples of how to get involved. This can be a powerful activity for small groups or trade/profession societies that are on the front lines.
Please contact Jeanne (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you are interested in bringing any of these awareness programs into your organization.
We also partner with organization who are actively addressing prevention strategies by dealing with the systemic issues such as violence against women, child abuse and neglect, pornography, and sexual addiction.
Coalition members support state and federal legislation that aids victims and prosecutes this crime. We work with the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force - Legislative Subcommittee and Polaris Project to advance awareness, disseminate information about legislative issues, educate representatives and testify before government or other advocacy groups.
See the interesting approach Sweden is taking to criminalize the BUYERS, not the victims: http://cnn.com/video/?/video/world/2011/03/30/shubert.cfp.sweden.trafficking.cnn
Care Giver Training
The trauma and psycho/spiritual damage that is inflicted on a human trafficking victim is complex and deeply rooted. Care requires a patient, cross-disciplinary approach. We are currently assessing national care models and utilizing the best of those programs to train local care-givers. We offer in-depth training program for direct service providers and abbreviated trainings for those who are already in those front-line professions and who may encounter human trafficking victims.
Shelter and Residential Programs
The greatest need for victims is a housing and therapeutic program that meetings their special needs. We are in the process of establishing a transitional residence for women who need this kind of unique approach to their care. Our program will include vocational training, academic development, spiritual care, and social re-entry through community service. We area also working with other service providers and law enforcement to establish safe haven locations for rescued victims.
The Maryland Coalition meets during the first week of each month at 6:30pm at The Samaritan Women Administration building. Anyone is invited to join.
You hear, O LORD, the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry, defending the fatherless and the oppressed, in order that man, who is of the earth, may terrify no more. —Psalm 10:17, 18