Healing Thistles: Fortifying Survivors with Hope, Home, and Future

Posted on December 5, 2018

 

Heal Trafficking Survivors Through Love, Community, and Business

The damage done to a woman’s life after decades of repeated prostitution, sex trafficking, abuse and addiction is deep. In 2017, 8,800 women in U.S. lived this fate, with 71% involving sex trafficking. Many of these women’s stories involve a rape incident between the ages of 9-11 and ensuing street selling by the age of 14. With little to no education, no work experience, and no hope of escape, many victims ultimately give up hope for a better life. .

Innovative Solution:

Thistle Farms in Nashville believes women who have survived trafficking, prostitution, and addiction deserve a second chance at life. The organization has a groundbreaking model that helps female survivors heal through the power of love, the safety of community, and the dignity of a job. Magdalene is the name of a two-year residential program that offers women a peaceful place to live and receive support while they focus on living sober, honest, and self-sufficient lives. Thistle Farms employs female survivors who handcraft natural products. After retail, proceeds are re-invested into creating more jobs. The model has been so successful, 40+ organizations nationwide have created programs based on Thistle Farms’ model of recovery.

Impact:

Thistle Farms believes love is the most powerful force in the world and the results demonstrate this. In the last year:
Thistle Farms has provided 9,000+ nights of safe, supportive housing, for women recovering from life on the streets; 825 hours of counseling and therapy for survivors, ensuring mental well-being; 664 medical appointments to ensure physical health; 74,800 hours of employment through social enterprises resulting in over $1.5M in income for women survivors; 1,300 women survivors employed through global partnerships. Additionally, 85% of graduates are able to remain sober, employed, and able to successfully live on their own.

 

Learn more about Thistle Farms at www.ThistleFarms.org