I’m sitting at my desk at Love146, and just a ways outside my office is my coworker Rob. For years, Rob (our President and Co-founder) has refused to let us put his desk inside a walled office, and has even offered to serve as our receptionist. His top priority is making sure there’s plenty of inviting couch space available near his desk for anyone to sit down and think with him. I’ve never felt like I’m an unwelcome interruption. Nothing is too precious to be questioned on those couches with Rob. They’re a space for listening, collaboration, thoughtfulness, innovation, perseverance, and hope. I (literally) just overheard Rob shout at a teammate as they walked by: “DON’T GIVE UP!” He does this a lot. It’s usually funny… but also important. So you, too, this week: Don’t give up. Do. Not. Give. Up. Fight for what matters. Here are some quick updates about how we’re continuing to fight child trafficking…
HOW DO WE MEASURE SUCCESS?
At Love146 we are continually learning, and we evaluate what we do so we can improve the care we offer child survivors of trafficking. So we were excited to be among a select group of anti-trafficking leaders invited to Portland, Oregon by the federal Office of Victims of Crime (OVC) to participate in an important conversation last month about how the anti-trafficking field can fully evaluate what it means to have effective programs. Love146 is dedicated to program evaluation. We continue to collect data, and initial outcomes suggest important program impact. We’re also actively exploring funding needed for a more rigorous outcome evaluation.
“I DIDN’T KNOW THE MEANING OF THE WORD ‘RAPE’ UNTIL I WAS 15.”
Mahery Nasoloniavo is the primary implementer of our prevention education flip chart “My Body is Mine” in Madagascar. In Mahery’s own words, “The children in Madagascar need to be reached because their parents aren’t talking about sexual abuse, or sexuality, with them. So kids aren’t aware of it. Even me, I was not. I didn’t know the meaning of the word ‘rape’ until I was 15. I was always asking, ‘What does that mean?’ But people avoided the discussion. It wasn’t until I was older when I understood what it was.”
HOLISTIC PREVENTION & A WHOLE-SYSTEM RESPONSE
“Not a Number,” Love146’s Prevention Education curriculum, received a shoutout in an important publication from The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services National Human Trafficking Training and Technical Assistance Center. They shared, “Over the past five years, Love146 has trained more than 3,000 professionals, giving them tools to prevent the trafficking of children and identify and support children who have been trafficked. Because Love146’s US Prevention Education efforts support a whole-system response, teachers and those who work with children and youth are trained to support children who may be at risk or experiencing exploitation. …. ‘Not a Number’ uses a holistic approach focusing on respect, empathy, individual strengths, and the relationship between personal and societal pressures that create or increase vulnerabilities.”