BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — The WellHouse will build a residential care facility for minor victims of sex trafficking on its campus and it will be the first home in Alabama.
The eight-bed facility will be built on the WellHouse’s 63-acre safe-house campus outside of Birmingham. The WellHouse campus includes a trauma center, a short-term program, a long-term program, and transitional living apartments, all for adult female trafficking survivors. With the new addition, the WellHouse home will be able to house up to 48 residents.
The WellHouse was awarded full funding for construction of the new home by the Housing Affordability Trust. It will be one of only 40 known programs for trafficked minors in the nation.
In 2019, The WellHouse launched WellHouse Child, a program designed to rescue and provide case management services to trafficked minors. The organization’s goal is to someday provide services in a residential setting. This year, that goal is being accomplished.
There is currently not an immediate placement for trafficked youth in Alabama, but the WellHouse Child home will include emergency accommodation for immediate care after the rescue.
Adult survivors of human trafficking who come to WellHouse receive intensive trauma therapy, medical care, job and life skills classes, equine and art therapies, health and wellness coaching, spiritual guidance, assistance with educational goals, addiction recovery, and immersive job experience. The same level of services will be provided to minors, to include on-site education and support for families whose children have experienced trafficking.
“Our hope is for every survivor to leave The WellHouse as an overcomer and knowing her true value, regardless of where life takes her next,” Wellhouse CEO Carolyn Potter said.
The organization will break ground on the facility in late 2020.
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