In Lowell, and across the country, sexual exploitation of minors has increased dramatically. CHH has been working to end sexual violence in Greater Lowell for over forty years and is keenly aware that trafficking feeds off the vulnerabilities of adults and youth. Several years ago, CHH joined and helped to lead the Lowell Commercial Sexual Exploitation Taskforce along with the Dept. of Children and Families (DCF) and other youth serving organizations. Now, during this health crisis it is more important than ever that our community come together to create sustainable long term care for at -risk minors and minor survivors of trafficking. Through a grant from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office for Victims of Crime, The Center for Hope & Healing, Inc. will provide services to the growing number of minors experiencing commercial sexual exploitation. With this funding, CHH will promote a specialized taskforce and resources for young people who have been exploited in our community. The taskforce, comprised of a community based multidisciplinary team, seeks to combat trafficking, provide culturally specific integrated survivor centered and trauma informed interventions to support vulnerable children and youth, and lastly provide consultation and training to community providers and community members to increase capacity to identify and support trafficked minors.
Meet the LET Youth Team!
Quotes from our Partners:
“Commercial sex trafficking is not just a problem that happens in “that part of town” or “that other country,” it is happening here in Massachusetts and it is happening right here in Lowell. As a core partner with the Center for Hope and Healing, NFI, Inc. is becoming an active part of the solution to address this serious issue and support survivors that have been, and are still being, impacted by it. CHH has made a concerted effort with community providers in the Greater Lowell area to bring this issue to the forefront and we are proud to join them in their fight to end trafficking.”
– Lydia Todd, Executive Director; NFI Massachusetts, Inc.
The Center for Hope and Healing has eagerly partnered with DCF, My Life My Choice, Middlesex County D’A’s office and numerous community stakeholders in our efforts to combat and prevent future child exploitation, and trafficking through continued education and training for mandated reporters and expanding intervention services for sexually exploited youth. I am very excited about the grant and opportunities that lie ahead for our collaborative mission of ending trafficking of youth. I look forward to partnering with CHH in our efforts to expand on the critical work being done now and mobilizing our community. Stakeholders into taking action in response to the sexual exploitation of our youth.
– Sherry Barghi, LICSW, Area Program Manager; DCF Greater Lowell Area