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Jun 16

New Hope for Trafficked Women

GSC logo_primaryWith the generous support of the Green Shield Canada Foundation, we have been able to help more than 50 young women, ages 15-18, get off the streets and begin to recover from the trauma of being sexually exploited and trafficked.

The many concerns of these young women include access to necessary health care and the support to make changes in their lives. Aligning with Green Shield Canada’s mission of Front Line Health Care, CCWED set up one-on-one counseling, a weekly drop-in, and other supports to help the young women obtain testing and treatment that would not have been possible given their status in society. Our program was conducted by a “Navigator” — a person who connects individuals to other services that are appropriate for their situation.

Coming from the South Asian, African, Caribbean, and Latin American communities, the young women were delighted to learn that they could also get back into the education system so that they could pursue their dreams of making a better life for themselves.

A number of the young women did not have legal immigration status, and were afraid to visit government-sponsored uninsured health clinics for fear that they would become known to the authorities and that this would lead to their deportation or incarceration. Others had concerns about the confidentiality of their health situations. CCWED’s Navigator was able to find alternatives that allowed the women to obtain the health care they needed and put them on a pathway to resolving their immigration status.

These young women now have hope for the first time since coming to Canada, and are excited about the possibilities of pursuing their education in the areas of law, social work, and psychology.

CCWED is grateful for the support of the Green Shield Canada Foundation, which made this initiative possible. We will continue to offer this program for other trafficked and sexually-exploited women with the assistance of our volunteers and our community partners. We applaud the courage of these young women in coming forward and we are confident they will reach their goals.

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