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Your gift helps make freedom real for human trafficking survivors
New York City is a major hub for human trafficking. At this very moment, approximately 10,000 women are being sold for sex or labor in every neighborhood of every borough in NYC. Human trafficking is a multi-billion dollar industry run by sophisticated business people exploiting others to make a profit, and although trafficking can happen to anyone in any community, it disproportionately impacts Black, Latina, and immigrant women.
Restore NYC’s mission is to make freedom real for survivors of trafficking in the United States by providing culturally sensitive, trauma-informed, and survivor-centric services. Since 2009, Restore NYC has pioneered innovative housing, counseling, and economic empowerment solutions that give survivors access to a safe home, a safe place to process trauma, and a safe job—the things that our data tells us make freedom real. Our work is led by the courage and strength of the survivors we serve and centers on impact and empowerment. We strategically use data to inform our program design to better serve survivors and leverage the Restore community of support to empower each survivor we have the privilege to serve.
Because we know we can’t do this work alone, strong partnerships are invaluable. Our partners include a strong mix of individual supporters, foundations, government partners, businesses, hospitals, community organizations, and a network of volunteers.
But it is the survivors we serve that truly make this work possible. They are the ones who show up with the resiliency and commitment to succeed and thrive beyond the circumstances they were living through.
Latasha is just one of the many survivors we have seen regain hope and create a life of opportunity and flourishing for herself. She grew up in Flushing, Queens, with her mother and two siblings. When Latasha was 17, she met Marcus. Marcus was older and would lavish her with gifts and attention she had never received before. Latasha fell in love with Marcus, but Marcus had other plans.
He knew Latasha’s mom had been laid off, and her family was pressed for money. He promised Latasha a job that would pay a lot in cash. Latasha dropped out of high school and started dancing at a gentlemen’s club six days a week, but Marcus took most of her earnings. She was barely left with enough money to survive. After a few months, Marcus
told her she wasn’t profitable enough. If she wanted to keep her job, she had to start servicing customers in the back room.
At just 17, Latasha felt she had no other choice. She had nowhere else to go. For four years, night after night, Latasha was exploited so that Marcus could make a profit.
Latasha found out about Restore online and decided it was time to find help. Restore’s crisis intervention team met with her that same day. The following week, she began meeting with a counselor, but Latasha was also eager to find safe work. She enrolled in Restore’s job readiness classes, where a group of volunteers met with her as she prepared for job interviews. These volunteers helped Latasha build a resume and connected her to a bakery in Harlem, where she continues to work today.
The journey of a survivor is not an easy journey, and Restore exists to walk alongside them on their journey to freedom. To learn more about Restore NYC programs, donate, or get involved in ways that help more survivors like Latasha, please visit restorenyc.org
Since 2009, we have pioneered innovative housing and economic-empowerment solutions that give survivors access to a safe home and a safe job—the things that our data tell us make freedom real.