About U.S. Survivor Care
After much research, regional assessment, and survivor input, we believe one of the best contributions we can make is to journey with youth as they leave exploitative situations. Many services exist, but few survivors have a trauma-informed advocate equipped to navigate these systems. By journeying with youth as they receive services such as legal assistance and therapy, as well as helping them with safety planning and crisis intervention, we can help ensure they’re receiving the best possible care. True freedom for a survivor looks many ways, but it should always involve reintegration into a healthy local community. We never want to foster dependency, so as youth grow and become independent, flourishing young adults, our support steps back slowly. However, we’ll always be there and we don’t close a case. This program doesn’t depend upon a safe home. The most pressing need we found was long-term specialized care that can partner with families or existing residential solutions. Presently, we are providing this long term care for survivors in Connecticut.
Our U.S. Survivor Care work also has a Rapid Response program. When we get a call about a youth who has been identified as trafficked, exploited, or at high risk, we meet with them to provide an urgent response to the dangers they could be facing. We have a conversation with them: we talk about the grooming process traffickers use, internet safety, healthy relationships, and solutions to potentially unsafe situations. To support that conversation, we leave the youth with a backpack filled with a range of items children and service providers have identified as being critical for this population: a blanket, a journal, a rain poncho, a teddy bear, toiletries, hotline numbers, an emergency phone, and much more. Some of these youth end up in Love146’s long-term care, but for those who don’t, Rapid Responses help ensure they have information and resources to help protect them. Rapid Responses are presently occurring with youth in Connecticut and the greater Houston area.
This project is supported with monies awarded by the Connecticut Judicial Branch and funds under Grant Award No. awarded to the Judicial Branch by the U.S. 2015 Dept. VOCA of Justice Assistance Program Grant Office. Points 2015-VA-GX-0016 of view or opinions contained within this document are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the Connecticut Judicial Branch or the U.S. Dept. of Justice.