Sex Trafficking Prevention
Sex Trafficking Prevention
Forget what you thought you knew about domestic sex trafficking and the best ways to prevent it. The problem is larger in scope and involves more factors than most can imagine. This book lays out what makes young people vulnerable to trafficking, exploring the real root of the problem and the numerous effects of abuse; outlines steps parents and others can take to mitigate those risk factors; and describes ways to help victims find healing.
Drawing from her own experience being trafficked plus her insights gained from years of advocacy and anti-trafficking work, the author speaks directly not only of the realities of trafficking that occurs in our own communities but also the solutions that we can all be a part of. She talks of everyday things we can do to intervene—not “rescue”—youth in troubled lives and homes. The book also lists hidden signs of trouble and offers parents and professionals practical tools and knowledge to intervene and make a positive difference in young people’s lives.
Publisher: Unhooked Books
Publication Date: July 2015
ISBN (print): 978-1-936268-84-9
ISBN (ebook): 978-1-936268-85-6
Savannah Sanders is a leading advocate in the prevention of child sex trafficking. A survivor of hardships, abuse, and trafficking, Savannah is now living a full life as a victim's advocate, wife, and mother of four. She is the Human Trafficking Services Manager at the Sojourner Center where she manages the SAFE (Safeguarding Adolescents From Exploitation) Action Project to help combat child sex trafficking, which was initiated and established by the The Sandra Day O’Connor Institute in 2013. Ms. Sanders shares her story and speaks regularly to groups across the United States on anti-trafficking efforts and ways to support victims. Listen as Savannah talks about her experience:
For she is uniquely and wonderfully made—
The year I met Savannah Sanders was the same year my clinical team and I assessed and treated 21 girls and young women who had been identified as sex trafficking survivors in order to better understand how to support that particular population of victims. At the time, I was the owner and executive director of a mental health clinic and had enjoyed a fifteen-year private practice specializing in abuse recovery. Savannah was the second “trafficked survivor” I had the privilege of meeting—she was unforgettable, mesmerizing, and one of the most beautiful and passionate young women I had ever met. As we sat on a bench talking in a sun-drenched park while her children laughed and played, she began to tell a heart-wrenching story of betrayal, abuse, and exploitation. While she talked I listened with tears welling in my eyes marveling at the exquisite strength and wisdom possessed by one so young. From our first meeting on I knew that Savannah would leave her mark on a broken world. I knew she would pass on every bit of support she received, impacting thousands of people in her lifetime. She is already living up to those expectations and continues not just to impact the survivors she serves but their caregivers as well.
Savannah was a quick study, paying keen attention to the models and interventions that helped her; she passes those on in practical ways to help others. In Sex Trafficking Prevention Savannah articulates hope for communities that bring children from darkness into light; her wounds eventually became a womb, a fertile place where life was birthed. Savannah’s sacred gift offered up on these pages is the vulnerable articulation of her story. The reader feels loved in the telling. It’s bold and honest and memorable as it gives each of us clear and simple direction in what we can do, what we must do, to prevent our children from being sold into slavery. It’s a mission of love, a model of costly compassion for communities.
There is much wisdom—applied knowledge in these pages. I am grateful that Savannah boldly tucks the subset of sex trafficking under the broader category of abuse. And so it is. Of the twenty-two interviews our clinical team conducted all but one of those beautiful young women had experienced early childhood sexual abuse that was perpetrated by adult(s) who were entrusted with their care. Every girl knew, what we are learning now, that the abuse and maltreatment they experienced as young children created the vulnerabilities that turned each of them into the “perfect victim.” By the time they ran to the streets, they told us, they were already survivors and bearing the scars of that early abuse. Whether we’re educators, providers, parents, or clergy, Sex Trafficking Prevention articulates when to intervene with children and teens and how to do it well. The time is now—this book shows us how. Thousands of children are waiting on us.
—Celestia Tracy, Founder and Director of Resource Development
Mending the Soul Ministries