April was Sexual Assault Awareness Month. People who experience sexual assault are more vulnerable to become victims of sex trafficking. We care about preventing sexual assault.
Change You Can See
When we shared how Micah at Northern Tide Tattoo helps survivors of sex trafficking, we were overwhelmed at the response! Every time we meet a survivor with a brand from a trafficker, he offers to cover it with a new tattoo—completely for free.
One participant at The Rose Home had a black brand. Now it's completely obscured by brightly-colored lotus flowers, thanks to Micah. The survivor chose lotus flowers because they can grow in the mud. The tattoo reminds her of being a flower growing into something beautiful despite her childhood and where she came from.
Among the flowers is Eye Heart World's orange rose: our symbol that each human life is unique and precious, even those that endure exploitation. Healing is not linear. This survivor will have good days and bad days, but no matter what, she can carry this sign of her freedom with her forever.
Visitors from Abroad
This month, a Congressional delegation from Ukraine visited The Rose Home! They wanted to learn about our Home and the other ways Eye Heart World fights human trafficking.
Ten people toured The Rose Home, including a prosecutor who works on human trafficking cases, civil servants who work for the National Trafficking hotline, an investigative journalist, and an individual who works with youth to prevent trafficking.
After the tour, we had an in-depth discussion about trafficking in Ukraine and the United States. We are grateful to the Sheboygan Rotary Club for hosting this delegation!
Healing and Horses
The survivors at The Rose Home visited Exceptional Equestrians for horse therapy. Multiple studies (including this one) have shown the benefits of horse therapy for individuals who have experienced severe trauma like survivors of sex trafficking have. This was the second time The Rose Home collaborated with Exceptional Equestrians, but it was the first time that these survivors participated in horse therapy.
Some of the ladies were a bit hesitant and nervous around the animals at first. As the therapists helped the survivors brush and walk with the horses, they grew more confident and brave. The girls bonded with the horses and, with some encouragement from others and their own determination, overcame their nervousness. By the end, all of the survivors were able to lead a horse without anyone’s help! The calming animals and welcoming environment helped these survivors connect with living creatures and grow more self-assured. Thank you, Exceptional Equestrians!
Telling Her Story
The survivors at The Rose Home worked on workforce preparation. Two participants finished writing resumes and filling out job applications this month, and another participant prepared and gave a presentation about her life.
She spoke twice: once in front of Probation and Parole, and another time for the Drug Court team. As she prepared the presentation, she felt nervous to speak in front of members of law enforcement. She realized that this was a great opportunity to share her story, so she kept going anyway.
She said, "Now it's out there. I remembered being told this could help someone else and even save someone else's life, so I wanted to do it."
The coaches at The Rose Home helped her prepare for the presentation. She asked them for advice, voiced her concerns, and received encouragement. By leaning on her support system, she realized that she doesn't have to do everything alone. In the end, the presentations went well! She said that after giving the presentation, she felt a release and felt free.
In the Community
The Heart Tour is how we prevent sex trafficking. It’s a series of six lessons for preteen and teenage girls about trafficking, value, and empowerment. We’re in the middle of presenting it to girls at the Boys and Girls Club in Green Bay, thanks to the Women’s Fund! The girls have already asked us to come back next year. We’d love to make this happen!
Tamara Remington from the Sheboygan Police Department gave a presentation about human trafficking at the Boys and Girls Club of Green Bay. She shared taught what human trafficking is and what it looks like in Northeast Wisconsin.
Her stories about actual human trafficking cases from Sheboygan made an impact on the community members, and the presentation was sprinkled with practical advice. She recommends being careful what we share on social media, because traffickers look for people who show vulnerability. She also pointed out that we are all vulnerable in some way, whether that comes from a strained relationship or a desire for a better life.
Tamara feels hopeful about the future because the students she meets are informed and ready to stand up for one another—which is how she believes we’ll end human trafficking. Thank you to the UWGB Social Justice Club club for hosting this event and providing pizza!
TeawhyB and DJ Drizzle Drake supported Eye Heart World by performing a free concert for us! The evening was full of dancing, donations, raffles, bowling, and live performances. McLanes Bowl hosted the event. All in all, the event raised over $900 and awareness that can’t be measured!
Coming Up Soon
We have some cool events coming up in May. We hope you can find a way to join us!May 19: Green Bay Blizzard Game for Eye Heart World. Attend a game of indoor football with the Green Bay Blizzard and support Eye Heart World at the same time!
May 20: Green Bay Rotary Award Dinner. You're invited to celebrate Craig Dickman as this year's recipient of the Green Bay Rotary's Free Enterprise Award. We're honored to be the charity partner for this year's dinner!
May 31: Dueling for Freedom. Leadership Green Bay is hosting dueling pianos to help spread awareness about human trafficking and the work we do to fight it.
June 4: Harley Raffle. We've partnered with Plank Road Pub and Grill in De Pere, WI to raffle off a 2018 Harley Davidson Heritage Classic! Tickets are $100, and there are only 500. Get yours here.