Houston Rescue and Restore Coalition Overview
Geographic areas served: The counties of Harris, Montgomery, Ft. Bend, Galveston and Waller.
Programs: • Front-line Professional Training Program
Training is an essential aspect of how HRRC addresses the human trafficking problem. In order for victims to be rescued, more community professionals need to have a greater understanding of the issue and how to identify a potential victim.
• Prevention Programs
HRRC believes that one of the way to address human trafficking is to prevent it from happening in the first place.
• Community Awareness Presentations
One of HRRC’s main objectives is to educate the public about the issue of human trafficking. We achieve this goal through our community awareness presentations to groups such as churches and rotary clubs.
• Human Trafficking Awareness Month
This annual event, now it is sixth year, is officially proclaimed by the Mayor of Houston (as Human Trafficking Awareness Month) and takes place during the month of September each year.
• The Look Beneath the Surface Traveling Art Exhibit
The art exhibit was developed to promote awareness about human trafficking through the eyes of local professional and young artists who have artistically interpreted the stories and experiences of human trafficking survivors.
HRRC’s Volunteer Program
On January 1, 2011 HRRC launched its new volunteer program. In order to volunteer with HRRC you must attend a Volunteer Orientation. The Volunteer Orientation will help the potential volunteer gain a better understanding of human trafficking, our organization, and the opportunities we have for individuals to get involved or volunteer in the local anti-human trafficking movement.
HRRC’s Subcontracted Outreach Projects
On July 1, 2011 HRRC was awarded a three year contract with the Department of Health and Human Services. Part of the purpose of this contract was to build capacity in the community around the issue of human trafficking through subcontracted programs to appropriate organizations in the community that could have the greatest impact in the area of human trafficking.
For additional information about our various programs please visit our website: http://www.houstonrr.org/about-us/current-projects-activities/
• Established a city-wide Human Trafficking Awareness Month, officially proclaimed by the Mayor of Houston for the last five years. The 2011 Human Trafficking Awareness Month was our biggest and most successful to date with events ranging from a human trafficking awareness bus tour to a 5K Fun Run/Walk.
• Over the past four years, HRRC has trained over 18,000 people about the issue of human trafficking, including professionals such as law enforcement agents, child protective services and health care professionals who play a key role in identifying potential victims of this crime.
• Developed a comprehensive health care training program on human trafficking called Human Trafficking and the Health Care Professional: Look Beneath the Surface and H.E.A.R Your Patient. This program educates health professionals on how to identify victims in the clinic setting and assisting health care systems in establishing protocols on human trafficking in their clinics and has received CME accreditation.
• Launched a new prevention training program initiative with at-risk youth adapting the My Life, My Choice curriculum. The program aims to prevent youth from falling victim to labor and sexual exploitation. It is the first time this program has been implemented in the State of Texas. HRRC is also working on developing a boy prevention program to be launched in Fall 2012.
• Completed a Field Assessment on Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking in Harris and Galveston County that will be used by local officials and agencies as a guide to develop better services for this victim population.
• Launched a campaign to establish Houston as one of the largest Fair-Trade cities. In acknowledgement of our efforts, HRRC has been selected by Fair Trade Towns USA to participate in an immersion trip to the Dominican Republic to see how the Fair Trade system works on the ground.