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Uncover the journey of Hope Against Trafficking, from its heartfelt inception to its current role as a beacon of hope for survivors. Our story is one of passion resilience, and unwavering belief in the power of restoration and new beginnings.
Hope Against Trafficking, originally named Monarch Wings as an image of survivors being set free, was started in late 2012 by two women who wanted to do something about the problem of Human Trafficking in Michigan. At that time, it was known there were over 1200 women enslaved in sex trafficking within a three-square mile of Detroit. Subsequently it was determined that trafficking was occurring in every zip code in the state. Since 2000, with the explosion of the internet, trafficking victimization has quadrupled in the U.S. Research showed that while there was focus on rescuing trafficking survivors, there were no long-term recovery programs in Michigan focused on physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual issues as well as life skills and job skills development. The average age victims fall prey to sex traffickers is 12-14 so finishing a GED was also a priority so survivors can be prepared for independence.
While survivor restoration is imperative, Hope’s larger goal is its work to help build awareness and prevention of trafficking. To date over 15,000 people have attended Hope’s Human Trafficking Overview presentation. In addition, Hope developed a school-based curriculum and subsequently aligned with A Courageous Voice in Spring 2023 to begin teaching a certified K-12 grade-based age-appropriate curriculum on Cyber Safety and Security from the Monique Burr Foundation. This program helps children and youth to prevent, recognize, and respond appropriately to all types of child abuse, bullying, cyberbullying, digital dangers, exploitation, and trafficking.
Over the last 10 years, Hope has developed a deep understanding of the needs of trafficking survivors struggling with PTSD trauma and is passionate about the need for our community to come together to prevent trafficking. We are grateful for those who have leaned in to make a difference by giving of their resources, time and treasure. Together, we provide Hope for the future of our children and survivors alike.
When people experience severe, complex, trauma, it is common for their lives to unravel. It is my passion to serve and work alongside survivors, helping them find a stability, independence, and sustainability they have never had. I began my nonprofit work in 2012 at a Pontiac before and after school program and summer camp. As the Assistant Director, I helped plan and implement programming. However, my favorite was spending time with the kids and building relationships with their parents. It was in that role I knew I wanted to work in a nonprofit entity, serving alongside at-risk and under-served populations.
Over the past ten years, I have fulfilled that passion in various roles. I have been in community programs, brick and mortar schools, virtual learning platforms, and residential juvenile justice and abuse/neglect programs. In 2021, I brought that passion to Hope Against Trafficking as the Program Director, empowering survivors of human trafficking to restore their lives and rewrite their stories. I have been so inspired by those I serve and have learned just as much as I have taught. My unconditional compassion and empathy have allowed me to build lifelong connections. After so many years in the field, I am excited to pursue my BA in Human Services from Southern New Hampshire University. I will use this education to improve the quality of services I provide to all survivors of traumatic experiences.
Outside of my work, I get to share life with my wonderful husband and our three beautiful daughters. We enjoy spending our time binge watching our favorite shows or swimming in the lake – when weather permits.
I am currently the Clinical Case Coordinator here at Hope Against Trafficking. I’m a licensed social worker who started my journey earning degrees at Eastern Michigan University and University of Michigan. I began my concentration in geriatrics but soon started venturing out in my career. My goal has always been to be an advocate; be the leg man for groups and individuals who have been exploited and taken advantage of.
After graduation I went on to work for the Delonis Center in downtown Ann Arbor working between their Community Outreach Division and Pathways Division. I took pride in helping find shelter, safety, and security during their trying times. I then went on to work for Alternative for Girls in Detroit. That’s where I found my passion of working with women. We all aren’t born with equal hands in life, so I enjoy sharing my knowledge, advice, and empowerment to other women. I can only hope to look back and know that I helped encourage women to fight for themselves and the opportunities in life they deserve.
When I am not working, I love spending my time adventuring outdoors with my husband and our 2 rescue dogs, Smokey and Brian.
I am a Michigan native, born and raised here on the east side of Detroit. Growing up in the Detroit metropolitan area, I attended charter schools. Until I graduated from High school in 2015. After high school I attended Western Michigan University. Where I pursued a career in human services. I graduated from Western with a Bachelor of Science degree in Interdisciplinary Health Services with a minor in Integrative Holistic Health. Post-graduation I accepted a job working with children with autism spectrum disorder and young adults. Teaching them the fundamentals of life skills as well as growing their social and emotional skills, after working with that population for several years, I yearned to expand my outreach. I found myself accepting the position as Residential Coordinator at Hope Against Trafficking in the Summer of 2023. Aligning with their goals and their mission to bring awareness to Human Trafficking. I have taken my compassion, humility, leadership, and communication to influence my role as Residential Coordinator.
I am a strong believer that through hard work and dedication, one can transform the entire trajectory of their life with love and support.
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