We are excited to announce our 7th 2023 Spring Grant Recipient!
Thanks to our generous Legacy Giving Circle donor community, Beloved Atlanta is receiving a $22,825 grant towards their “Recovery Rocket” and transportation initiative, which enables women to begin their journey of autonomy and self-care.
Initiative Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Initiative Cause Area: Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation
UN Sustainable Development Goals: 03 Good Health & Well-Being; 10 Reduced Inequities
Initiative Description: BeLoved provides the only two-year home for survivors of forced prostitution, trafficking, and addiction in the city of Atlanta. BeLoved believes one of the bravest decisions a woman makes is to leave a life of commercial exploitation, and once she does, she should be met with celebration, trust, and individualized care. For the past ten years, we’ve worked with survivors and experts in this field to create a unique residential program that empowers women to envision a new life beyond sexual exploitation.
BeLoved offers safe and secure housing where program participants, all of whom have lived through homelessness, live free-of-charge and become part of a supportive community. BeLoved operates four homes located west of Downtown Atlanta, which allow our residents to utilize the city’s resources, learn to overcome triggers, and live in a community of accountability during and after the program.
A key component to BeLoved’s residential and recovery program is our “Recovery Rocket” and transportation initiative, which enable women in our program to begin their journey of autonomy and self-care. Our residents use BeLoved’s Recovery Rocket, and/or MARTA to access intensive outpatient drug and alcohol rehab, medical and dental appointments, medication pick-ups, AA/NA meetings, GED and education classes, employment training, and activity passes, such as, the gym, nail salon, and visits to family and friends.
Initiative Impact: Many girls in forced prostitution are first sold to a man for sex when they are between the ages of 12-14. These girls are preyed upon by pimps who use violence and drugs as tools for control. Despite, 87% of women in the sex industry saying they want out, they often become trapped in a vicious cycle of trafficking, forced prostitution, and addiction with no other means of survival. By the time most women enter the BeLoved Program, they have experienced 30-40 years of complex trauma. In the anti-trafficking field, women are often removed from their environment, monitored 24/7 by staff, and must adhere to strict guidelines – in essence, women are removed from one controlling environment only to be placed in another.
BeLoved believes that each woman should have the loudest voice in her own recovery and that healing occurs through dignity, respect, and accountability. BeLoved gives each woman the tools and resources necessary to equip her to take ownership of her own healing process. BeLoved’s Recovery Rocket and transportation initiative allow women in our program to experience autonomy, reintegrate themselves in a community, and normalize their lives.
BeLoved requests $22,825 to fund our Recovery Rocket and transportation costs for 10-15 survivors over a 12- month period. Funding from Legacy Collective will provide a crucial component of each survivor’s journey to regain control of her own life and equip her to envision a life where she never has to return to sexual exploitation as a means of survival.
Initiative Sustainability: BeLoved understands when a woman makes the brave decision to step into our program that she is trusting all her needs will be met. We ensure this through monthly donors, a reserve account containing four months of operating expenses, and raising a portion of our budget the year prior. We have recently hired a development director and external fundraising coach to continue to grow our financial resources. We also continue to look for creative partnerships to lessen the costs of transportation for our clients. We are looking into a partnership with Lyft for reduced cost rides as well as opportunities to receive discounted Marta cards for our clients. Additionally, we are working to grow our volunteer base to help provide transportation to residents.