Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2014, $450,000)
The Mentoring for Child Victims of Commercial Sexual Exploitation and Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking Initiative supports efforts of community service organizations to respond to the needs of child victims of commercial sexual exploitation and domestic sex trafficking (CSE/DST), including children who are U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents. Project sites will develop or enhance their mentoring capacity, facilitate outreach efforts, and increase the availability of direct services for child victims of CSE/DST. OJJDP expects project sites to integrate promising practices and proven principles into their mentoring service models; develop strategies to recruit, train, support, and maintain mentors; and provide a comprehensive array of support services to empower girls, boys, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth to move past their experiences with victimization to develop their full potential.
This program is authorized by Department of Justice Appropriations Act, Pub. L. No. 113-76, 128 Stat. 5, 64.
This project is a collaborative effort among El Paso, Texas agencies who will work together to enhance and improve mentoring and other critical support services for child victims of commercial sexual exploitation and domestic sex trafficking (CSE/DST). The goals of this project are to align local services to 1) increase community awareness and training levels about the target population, including how and to whom to report suspected CSE/DST, 2) enhance mentoring services to better meet the needs of these youth, 3) create and implement an enhanced training platform for mentors that will offer targeted basic and ongoing trainings, and 4) develop and enhance additional critical supports for victims and youth at-risk of CSE/DST, including youth who self-identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual, queer, or intersexed. To support these goals, partnering agencies will provide targeted services.
The El Paso Center for Childrens program Center of Hope, which specifically targets this population and this issue in the community, will provide emergency shelter, advocacy, referral, and outreach services. Outreach will include basic training on the CSE/DST issue and impact on victims, as well as include recruitment information to encourage community members to become mentors to these victims and at-risk youth.
The El Paso Child Guidance Center will provide Intermediate and Advanced trainings to community organizations such as juvenile probation officers, school counselors, and mental health professionals. They will also provide trauma-informed therapy to victims and at-risk youth who have experienced trauma. Finally, they will provide advanced training and supervision support to the Professional Mentor/Case Manager to support emerging needs among that professionals personal mentees and the mentor/mentee matches they are supporting.
Together, partners anticipate providing more than 120 community presentations and trainings reaching hundreds of local professionals, enhanced mentoring services and training to approximately 78 youth, and shelter and therapy services vital to preventing re-victimization.