‘New Identity’ for Trafficking Victims
‘From my own experience as a youth, and having been subjected to things that youth should not be subjected to, I have a heart and a passion for women who are forced into a situation that they should never have to face,’ she says. ‘Many of them, even though they are fully engaged in these activities, really don’t want to be on the streets.’
Holly says women often stay on the streets because they don’t have anywhere else to go, they are addicted to drugs, or they are afraid of their pimps.
‘Many of them are looking for a way out, and The Salvation Army has the ability to help them get back on their feet, not only physically, but with a spiritual foundation,’ Holly says.
‘I want them to know that they are worth more than what their “johns” are telling them. God has created them in His image and He can use them and clean them up and give them the purpose that He intended for them initially.’
Holly says The Salvation Army recently held a memorial service at the drop–in center for a woman who was killed on the streets. It’s all part of building relationships with the women.
‘Since I’ve been here, I’ve spoken with many young ladies who have been very comfortable coming to me … not knowing my background. They didn’t realize that I had also gone through a period in my life when I was sexually abused. I was able to share my testimony as a result of that and encourage them.’
Holly says her counsel to the women varies according to their needs, but her overarching theme is that they can be new creations in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). She often uses the accounts from the Bible about the potter and the clay, the woman at the well, and the woman with an issue of blood.
‘[My counsel] really always hinges on new life,’ Holly says.
Holly says that is also how she sees herself. Calling Christ ‘my everything,’ she says she knows that her past has been cleansed.
‘Christ is my new identity,’ she says. ‘I’m not what the world tries to say I was. I’m not all of those terrible things that happened to me in my life. So Christ, to me, means newness.’
To view main article, see She’s Been There.