Since 2002, Shared Hope has partnered with Jamaican nationals to combat the burgeoning domestic sex trade and address the increasing need for awareness, restoration, and justice. Shared Hope directly combats the sex trafficking of Jamaican women and children by partnering with local organizations to provide safe housing and holistic restoration programs for at-risk or commercially sexually exploited youth.
Home of Hope, through funding from Shared Hope, can offer restorative care to six young women who have become pregnant as a result of commercial or familial sexual exploitation or who are at risk. Residents are received with love and grace into a safe and caring environment.
Since 2010, this Jamaican Home of Hope welcomed 22 young women into the home and offered non-resident services to some in transition. Each young woman receives education and life skills development that includes information to help her prepare for her baby’s future – everything from financial planning to managing a household and proper nutrition.
Montego Bay’s Home of Hope offers a government-recognized job-training curriculum, which guarantees post-graduation employment, an essential aspect of survival for young mothers. Past graduates received top awards and have been recognized among the student leaders. These young scholars offer hope to their fellow residents and illustrate an example of success, determination and accomplishment in a life free from sex slavery.
Shared Hope International partnered with the United Church of Negril and other investors to open a Home of Hope in Negril on October 1, 2010. The hilltop home offers 24-hour rehabilitative care in a family environment for up to six vulnerable or exploited young women and girls. The home offers a computer center, game room, sewing center, and library for residents. The successful education, life skills and therapy programs have solidified the home’s reputation as an excellent center of care in Jamaica.
All residents enroll in education programs and a certified program called HEART. HEART is a government training program that requires students pass Grade 9 to become eligible to take the HEART entrance exam. This vocational training program provides skills that will guarantee job placement in their community. The campus is open to residents and students in the community to receive education in the following core areas: English, math, computer skills, and life skills. Each student has the opportunity to learn a certified skill in housekeeping, cosmetology or lifeguarding. All students must also take 30 hours of entrepreneurial training to prepare for the possibility of opening their own business. Aside from daily classes, the staff ensures there are various programs of interest to engage the residents in positive campus activities, a welcome balance for these hard-working students.
The Homes of Hope in Negril and Montego Bay work in strategic partnership to respond to the specialized needs of each resident or client. This collaboration has proven very fruitful as both facilities work to rescue women and children in Jamaica’s sex trade.
Women’s Investment Network
Vocational training opportunities in housekeeping, lifeguarding, cosmetology and printing services are available to all residents and clients of Negril Home of Hope. The cosmetology courses teach students how to give facials, manicures, pedicures, and more, allowing the student to learn marketable skills in the dominant tourism industry of Jamaica.
The print services training challenges students in the areas of marketing, branding, and design. Students create a variety of products such as menus, table tents, brochures, and flyers at a reduced fee for local hotels, restaurants, and small businesses.