Human Trafficking: How to help survivors

SAVANNAH, Ga. – Thursday is the fifth annual National Human Trafficking Awareness Day.

In 2017 there were more than 200 cases of human trafficking made in Georgia and South Carolina.

WSAV spoke with a representative of Fresh Start Healing Heart to learn more about how local families can provide refuge, encouragement and support to survivors of trafficking, be it labor or sexual.

News 3 asked the representative what the chance is for someone to make it out of a trafficking situation.

“The statistics that I’ve seen is one percent,” she said. “It’s better than what they had before and so they really don’t see themselves as a victim.”

Even though the odds are stacked against them, Fresh Start is dedicated to help people break the physical and mental bonds of modern-day slavery.

“Often times we’re finding there are people who didn’t have all that great a relationships with their family or there’s disbelief in the family and so we’re working to restore that family,” she said.

The representative, who asked to remain anonymous due the severity of her work, told News 3 one way Fresh Start provides support is through host families. These families take on usually a year commitment while survivors transition back to a more stable and safe way of life and employment or education.

“There is a lot of risk when you’re taking someone who is dealing with a lot of issues and maybe a gang situation. The nice things is with our host families we allow them to dictate what they’re willing to work with,” she said.

These families are needed both in Georgia and South Carolina. There is financial support given to qualified families.

To learn more call (843) 338-8896.

Fresh Start Healing Heart will be attending and speaking at the Savannah Traffick Jam on Saturday, January 20.

A trafficking survivor helped by Fresh Start will be speaking to audiences at Savannah State.

The event is free and starts at 8:00 a.m. To learn more click here.

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