When children are separated from their exploiters, they need a safe and secure place to stay with genuine love, care, and services designed to promote healing. However, the single biggest problem faced by social service agencies, advocacy groups, and government agencies helping sex trafficking survivors is the lack of supportive homes for healing. Without a place to live or a holistic approach to healing, the greatest likelihood is retraumatization and continued exploitation. While homeless or domestic violence shelters offer temporary respite to adult survivors, they do not provide the security, long-term care or intensive counseling necessary to help minors overcome the physical, mental and spiritual trauma that results from being bought and sold.
Pope Francis recently said, “human trafficking is an open wound on the body of contemporary society, a scourge upon the Body of Christ. It is a crime against humanity.”
Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children refers to a range of crimes and activities involving the sexual abuse or exploitation of a child for the financial benefit of any person or in exchange for anything of value (including monetary and non-monetary benefits) given or received by any person. Human trafficking is defined as the use of force, fraud, or coercion to exploit a person for some type of labor or commercial sex purpose. Claire’s House specifically addresses commercial sex trafficking and the exploitation of minors.