Their first year of their relationship, Ted was kind, attentive, and affirming. He supported Maya’s dreams and ambitions, spending hours conversing at the local coffee shop, joining her on double dates with her friends, and even meeting Maya’s family at Thanksgiving. Ted dedicated a year to earning her trust, so when he suggested she leave her family to be with him, Maya didn’t think twice. Believing she had found her dream man, Maya and Ted relocated to another city to begin their life together as a couple.
However, once the distance increased between Maya and her family, Ted began to change., He coerced her into performing sex work with threats of harming her family and friends, which resulted in her lack of stable housing as she was trafficked from city to city for about four long years. Under his control, he mentally, emotionally, and physically abused her. Whenever she failed to meet his financial demands, the abuse intensified, even escalating to the point of him threatening her with a gun, leaving her fearing for her life. He constantly reminded her that she was his property, leaving her feeling trapped with no way out.
One night, while working, Maya summoned the courage to escape and seek help. She went to her local Police Station where they introduced her to their local Trafficking Task Force. There, she was provided with resources and connected to Radiant Futures. Upon entering our emergency shelter, Maya finally began to feel safe and ready to work with the Human Trafficking Task Force, initiating charges against her trafficker. She cooperated with lawyers and law enforcement until he was arrested and charged, providing her with a greater sense of safety and hope for the future.
While diligently addressing the legal aspects of her case, Maya took full advantage of the services and programs offered at Radiant Futures. She attended the computer literacy program and received a free Chromebook to aid her training and job search. Engaging in the Financial Literacy classes and participating in the I-5 program, she acquired valuable skills enhancing her employment opportunities. She was thrilled at the opportunity to present a business plan as part of her dream to become her own boss in the future.
Maya’s determination and desire to move forward lead her to enroll in the transitional housing program that will further support her in reaching her employment and self-sufficiency goals. She expressed eternal gratitude for the blessings and opportunities she received at Radiant Futures, always feeling welcomed by the staff and other residents, safe, secure, and appreciative of the continuous support that helped her regain confidence and rebuild her life. Maya aspires to give back to the community, becoming an advocate for victims of human trafficking and domestic violence, believing that “everyone deserves a second chance at life.”
If you or someone you know is in need of assistance, please call our 24/7 Helpline at 877-531-5522.