Mission: GEMS provides preventive and transitional services to young women, ages 13-21 years, who are, at risk for or, involved in sexual exploitation and violence.
Geographic areas served: New York
Programs: In 2014, gems' training and technical assistance department trained over 1,300 individuals with the agency's commercial sexual exploitation of children (csec) 101 curriculum and the agency's survivor-created victim, survivor, leader (vsl) model of empowerment curriculum. Gems served 371 girls and young women who had experienced commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking in 2014. All of gems' members receive a variety of support services including individual and group counseling, case management, peer support, participation in therapeutic, educational, recreational, and creative positive youth development group programming, medical and mental health treatment through our community partners, and educational and vocational support and tutoring. Gems members come to the agency through an array of referral sources and established partnerships, but there are four primary program components that members are enrolled in according to referral source and need: alternative to incarceration, family court advocacy, transitional and supportive housing, and holistic case management. There are also secondary program components, including youth development, youth leadership, youth fellowship, educational initiative, and short-term and crisis care in which a majority of gems' girls and young women participate. The agency's members may transition from one program within the organization to another at various times depending on their needs. Members are offered an array of services, support and opportunities to help them exit commercial sexual exploitation and obtain educational goals and healing.
I was subject to sexual assault a few years ago, and while my terror in no way compares to that of the girls GEMS is working to save, my experience makes GEMS work hit very close to home.
Physical love is a precious thing, and it is being stolen from girls all around the world, and close to home, right now. GEMS is working to end that theft and return sexual ownership to all females. If that isn't a cause worth fighting for, and celebrating, I don't know what is!
The GEMS organization deserves all the recognition and support that is available. With them, we can save lives, in more ways then one. Xo!
I have only been a member of this organization for a little bit but I can tell you this. I know of girls who have struggled with sexual exploitation and to know that there are people who care, people who have been through the same thing is most crucial for these young victims.There needs to be more of these organizations.