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Amirah, Inc.

 10 Tower Office Park, Suite 413
 Woburn, MA 01801
[P] (781) 462-1758
[F] --
http://www.amirahboston.org/
[email protected]
Stephanie Clark
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INCORPORATED: 2009
 Printable Profile (Summary / Full)
EIN 27-1214049

LAST UPDATED: 05/24/2018
Organization DBA --
Former Names --
Organization received a competitive grant from the Boston Foundation in the past five years No

Summary

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Mission StatementMORE »

Amirah, Inc. provides a refuge for those seeking to break free from exploitation and heal in community on their journey toward lasting hope.

 

 

Mission Statement

Amirah, Inc. provides a refuge for those seeking to break free from exploitation and heal in community on their journey toward lasting hope.

 

 

FinancialsMORE »

Fiscal Year Jan 01, 2017 to Dec 31, 2017
Projected Income $260,000.00
Projected Expense $160,000.00

ProgramsMORE »

  • Long-term (1-2yrs) Whole-Person Care Progam

Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2014 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2013 (%)

For more details regarding the organization's financial information, select the financial tab and review available comments.


Overview

Mission Statement

Amirah, Inc. provides a refuge for those seeking to break free from exploitation and heal in community on their journey toward lasting hope.

 

 

Background Statement

In 2008, a small group of people, deeply impacted after reading a book on human trafficking, began speaking to different groups to raise awareness. As they continued their research, they learned that concerted efforts were underway to create legislation, engage law enforcement, address demand and raise awareness; however, the most obvious unmet need was safe, stable housing providing whole-person aftercare.


In June 2009, the vision was born to create an organization that would provide restorative, trauma-informed, whole-person care specifically for survivors of sex trafficking. The vision would center on providing safe homes for survivor recovery. In July 2009, we chose the name Amirah, which in Persian means “princess” or “female leader.” It reflects the sense of value and dignity that we seek to restore within those we serve.

2009-2012 was spent researching best practices and building an extensive network of friends, donors, partners, and volunteers. With only a few organizations in the US providing this level of survivor aftercare, we collaborated with dozens of survivors, medical providers, legal advisors, trauma experts, therapists, program directors, and consultants in developing and focusing our program plans.

From 2013-2014, the safe home was piloted and opened. However, the need and costs were too great at the time due to a lack of staffing and lack of sustainable funding. The Board of Directors chose to close the safe home temporarily and find out the best practices to run this safe home, and future safe homes, in a sustainable way.

In 2015, Amirah opened up again with Stephanie Clark as the new Executive Director. Within 6-months, the monthly donors had doubled and sustainable funding came in to operate the safe home. Heather Thornburg came on as the new Program Director, continuing to develop a world-class program where every survivor is given a chance at restoring her life. In October of 2015, the safe home opened and now celebrates graduates from their individualized, whole-person care, trauma-informed program that was specifically designed for them. These survivors that graduate are restored back into society with employment, housing, and sustainable emotional/mental health support, thriving as the women they were created to be.


Impact Statement

In 2016, the accomplishments that we met as an organization and program were the following:

 

  1. Established the right program staff to provide sustainable care for the program participants.
  2. Trained over 200 volunteers on direct care service.
  3. Offered placement in the safe home and program to victims of sex trafficking at a steady, growing, sustainable pace of 6-8 weeks.
  4. Tripled our monthly donors from April of 2015.

 

In 2017, the goals that we have are:

 

  1. See revenue continue to increase by 10% over the estimated budget, so that expansion efforts can be discussed in 2018.
  2. Have a survivor-mentor come into the safe home program on a seasonal basis to lead group curriculum “Ending the Game.”
  3. Graduate three women from their program.
  4. End the year with 5 women in the safe home program.

 


Needs Statement

 Amirah’s current most pressing needs are the following:

 

  1. Volunteers that are willing to be a part of the direct care rotation shifts during the slow summer months when most of our volunteer core are traveling.
  2. Community groups (churches, small groups, groups with corporations) willing to invest financially in Amirah’s whole-person care program and provide a platform for one of Amirah’s Speakers to share on the reality of sex trafficking here in New England.
  3. Growth in monthly donor support by another 50 participants signing up to become monthly supporters – amounts vary from $25/month to $150/month.
  4. In the coming years, potential properties that could be used for future safe homes (already having been zoned for residential group homes).

 

 


CEO Statement

The scary reality is that commercial sexual exploitation is pervasive throughout New England. Each day, I speak with people and open up their eyes to the reality that is right in front of us in our own neighborhoods. As Americans, we tend to put up safety walls, so our instinct is to think that if sex trafficking exists here, then it must be foreign internationals that are being trafficked. However, the reality is that the majority of women being trafficked in New England grew up right here in New England.


Amirah offers a safe place where these women can come to restore their lives, but the reality is that choosing to come into our program to begin the hard work of recovery is possibly one of the most difficult things for a trafficking survivor to do. She faces complex-trauma, which means years of trauma compiling upon itself. She has PTSD, anxiety attacks, and often suffers from Borderline Personality Disorder. All of the referrals that we have received have had a history of substance abuse and addiction. So the work laid out before us can be likened to mental health recovery, drug addiction recovery, and shelter life all wrapped up together and amplified on steroids.

However, we choose to walk into this complex world with her, because the reality is that no one else has or will. We offer her a program that addresses the trauma she has faced in every facet of her being – physical, mental, emotional, social, vocational, and spiritual. We offer her placement into a long-term program (some lasting 2 years) in order to give her ample time to work on laying the groundwork that is needed to restore her life. We work with her to establish the services she needs among our network of service providers and community partners so that she is able to build her own personal, supportive community that will remain available to her after graduation from Amirah as she continues her journey in recovery.

There are other safe homes out there, but none are as extensive as what is being offered at Amirah. We seek to offer these women excellence and a community that will give them hope once again.


Board Chair Statement

Amirah provides:

  • Transformative, whole-person care to women survivors of commercial sexual exploitation
  • A program tailored to address each participant's physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, and vocational needs
  • A safe, stable home providing a refuge for women who want to break free from the cycle of exploitation, recover from trauma and addiction, and work towards healthy, independent living
  • A caring community created by weaving together the clients, staff, and partners
  • Community awareness and capacity-building for service providers/partners

All this and more makes it easy for me to be glad and grateful to be connected with Amirah and to serve as the Chair of its Board of Directors. Amirah is a young organization, with great potential for growth and new opportunities. Our unique model of whole-person transformative care has now been proven effective and we’re working hard each day to grow and strengthen these programs. I trust that as more people become aware of the scale and scope of human trafficking--especially as more Americans come to understand that trafficking is in our own back yards--more will choose to support Amirah and its programs. We can not all go to Nepal or India to storm brothels, but most of us can do something to show care for and provide help to trafficking survivors. Amirah is the only program of its kind in all of New England. Isn't supporting the work of Amirah an opportunity you would find gratifying?

- Nancy Mering, Chair of the Board

Geographic Area Served

STATEWIDE
City of Boston- Citywide (Indiv. neighborhoods also listed)
City of Boston- Allston/ Brighton
City of Boston- Back Bay
City of Boston- Beacon Hill/ West End
City of Boston- Charlestown
City of Boston- Chinatown/ Leather District
City of Boston- North Dorchester
City of Boston- South Dorchester
City of Boston- Downtown
City of Boston- East Boston
City of Boston- Fenway/ Kenmore
City of Boston- Hyde Park
City of Boston- Jamaica Plain
City of Boston- Mattapan
City of Boston- Mission Hill
City of Boston- North End
City of Boston- Roslindale
City of Boston- Roxbury
City of Boston- South Boston
City of Boston- South End/Bay Village
City of Boston- Harbor Islands
City of Boston- West Roxbury
BERKSHIRE REGION, MA
CAPE &ISLANDS REGION, MA
CENTRAL REGION, MA
METROWEST REGION, MA
NORTHEAST REGION, MA
PIONEER VALLEY REGION, MA
SOUTHEAST REGION, MA
STATEWIDE
GREATER BOSTON REGION, MA
Amirah offices and safe home are on the North Shore of Boston. We serve women coming out of exploitation from the Greater Boston and New England areas.

Organization Categories

  1. Human Services - Centers to Support the Independence of Specific Populations
  2. Civil Rights, Social Action, Advocacy - Civil Rights, Social Action, & Advocacy N.E.C.
  3. Mental Health & Crisis Intervention - Residential Mental Health Treatment

Independent research has been conducted on this organization's theory of change or on the effectiveness of this organization's program(s)

No

Programs

Long-term (1-2yrs) Whole-Person Care Progam

The Amirah Home is a safe place located North of Boston that serves women 18+ years of age who are survivors of commercial sexual exploitation (sex trafficking).  It provide 24/7 care for up to 8 program participants. 

Amirah's Whole-Person Care Program is a trauma-informed, individualized, long-term program that addresses the six avenues of the whole-person (physical, mental, emotional, social, vocational and spiritual). Throughout the 2-year program, a survivor of sex trafficking will do trauma recovery with the program staff as well as our community partners covering the following services: Physical Care (Doctors, Dentists, Local Gyms, Local Recreational Groups), Therapies (Group and Individual, Equine, Trauma-Yoga, Massage Therapy), Addiction Recovery (NA Meetings, Smart Recovery Meetings, Celebrate Recovery Meetings), Career Placement Groups (Resume Building, Job Training), Spiritual Recovery (Local Faith Communities).
 
 
 

 

Budget  $359,400.00
Category  Housing, General/Other Transitional Housing
Population Served Victims Females Adults
Program Short-Term Success 

10 women will receive services and care in the safe home.

90% of participants experience a sense of safety and begin to access comprehensive services that give them tools to make self-initiated healthy choices towards their recovery. 

Program Long-Term Success 

Within one year, 100% of participants will see positive improvements in each of their self-identified goals.

100% of participants will gain knowledge and skills of health-promoting activities such as regular sleeping patterns, nutrition, coping strategies and life skills.

We expect 80% participation in activities to prepare for economic self-sufficiency and overall well-being 

Program Success Monitored By 

Measurement will occur at entry, weekly, exit, and post-exit intervals.

Staff-based

Client database: To collect demographics, services provided, case notes, etc.

Outcomes Matrix: Captures client progress through pre and post assessments

Observational Notes/ Log book: Qualitative Observations and notes completed regularly by staff on client interactions, growth, etc..

Client-based

Partners will complete initial evaluations on their satisfaction with Amirah’s training and document quarterly surveys to report the number of victims identified and referrals to comprehensive services.

Trauma recovery is complete when survivors tell their story.  After clients are ready and been trained to tell their story they will do so in an appropriate venue.

Clients will complete satisfaction surveys on the impact of groups, expressive therapies and other comprehensive services.

Clients will document and evaluate their own progress through self-assessments, client journals and creative arts.

Examples of Program Success 
In October 2013, the safe home opened its doors to provide whole-person aftercare services for 13 clients to date. 
 
After reviewing our programs, the Victim Assistance Coordinator at Homeland Security said, “I was excited to hear about your safe house that is coming to fruition; it is definitely a gap in services that is much needed.  The concept of ‘one-stop shopping,’ is key to victims moving on with their lives.”
 

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments


Management


CEO/Executive Director Ms. Stephanie Clark
CEO Term Start Apr 2015
CEO Email [email protected]
CEO Experience

Stephanie Clark has been the Executive Director of Amirah since April 2015. She is a passionate advocate for victims and survivors of sex trafficking, working to provide not only a place for aftercare to exist for these individuals, but develop a greater system of aftercare within our communities. She has a desire to see both global and domestic changes in the view of women. Prior to this position, she served as an Associate Pastor at Calvary Christian Church in Lynnfield, MA, overseeing the Christian Education/Discipleship ministry, as well as offering pastoral counseling to the majority of the female population within the congregation. Prior to that, she was a small business owner. She is a writer, public speaker and advocate. She has her undergraduate degree in biblical languages from Moody Bible Institute of Chicago.


Co-CEO Ms. Stephanie Clark
Co-CEO Term Start Apr 2015
Co-CEO Email [email protected]
Co-CEO Experience --

Former CEOs and Terms

Name Start End
-- -- --

Senior Staff

Name Title Experience/Biography
Heather Thornburg Program Director --

Awards

Award Awarding Organization Year
-- -- --

Affiliations

Affiliation Year
-- --
Member of state association of nonprofits? No
Name of state association --

External Assessments and Accreditations

External Assessment or Accreditation Year
-- --

Collaborations

--

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments


Foundation Comments

--

Staff Information

Number of Full Time Staff 3
Number of Part Time Staff 4
Number of Volunteers 160
Number of Contract Staff 6
Staff Retention Rate % 100%

Staff Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 1
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 11
Hispanic/Latino: 1
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 0
Other (if specified): --
Gender Female: 13
Male: 0
Not Specified 0

Plans & Policies

Organization has Fundraising Plan? Yes
Organization has Strategic Plan? Yes
Years Strategic Plan Considers 5
Management Succession Plan No
Business Continuity of Operations Plan No
Organization Policies And Procedures Under Development
Nondiscrimination Policy No
Whistle Blower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy No
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy Yes
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes
State Registration --

Risk Management Provisions

General Property Coverage
Workers Compensation and Employers' Liability
Directors and Officers Policy

Reporting and Evaluations

Management Reports to Board? Yes
CEO Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually
Non Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually

Governance


Board Chair Ms. Nancy Mering
Board Chair Company Affiliation retired
Board Chair Term July 2015 - June 2018
Board Co-Chair --
Board Co-Chair Company Affiliation --
Board Co-Chair Term -

Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
Sam Aureli Gilbane Building Company Voting
Megan Burnett Biogen Voting
Carter Crockett Gordon College Voting
Jim Dalton Infor Voting
Robin Feeney Strata Pathology Partners Voting
Greg Hood Lynn Community Health Center Voting
Jodi Hyer WomenCraft Social Enterprise Voting
Priscilla Masterson Element Care & Private Practice Voting
Sini Mathew Bolden & Bonfiglio Voting
Nancy Mering Retired Voting
Greg Smith Security Innovation Voting
Laurie Truschel Gordon College Voting

Constituent Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Youth Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Advisory Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
Jan Carlberg Writer/Storyteller NonVoting
Andrew DeFranza Harborlight Community NonVoting
Peter DiMarzio Victim Assistance Coordinator, Homeland Security NonVoting
Sarah Durfey Abolitionist Network, Emmanuel Gospel Center NonVoting
Eric Goodwin Brewster Ambulance Co. NonVoting
Rod Hoffman Attorney NonVoting
Zoe Kessler LCSW NonVoting
Jimmy Lee Restore NYC NonVoting
Kalya Hamlett Murray Greater Boston YMCA NonVoting
Ari Nikolaou Number 16 NonVoting
David Ray Number 16 NonVoting
Hanni Stoklosa Brigham & Women's NonVoting

Board Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 1
Caucasian: 11
Hispanic/Latino: 1
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 0
Other (if specified): --
Gender Female: 8
Male: 5
Not Specified 0

Board Information

Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 3
Board Meeting Attendance % 91%
Written Board Selection Criteria Yes
Written Conflict Of Interest Policy Yes
Percentage of Monetary Contributions 100%
Percentage of In-Kind Contributions 100%
Constituency Includes Client Representation No

Standing Committees

    --

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments


Foundation Comments

--

Financials


Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2014 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2013 (%)

Fiscal Year Jan 01, 2017 to Dec 31, 2017
Projected Income $260,000.00
Projected Expense $160,000.00
Form 990s

2016 Form 990

2015 Form 990

2014 Form 990

2013 990

2012 990

2011 990-EZ

Audit Documents --
IRS Letter of Exemption

IRS Letter of Determination

Prior Three Years Total Revenue and Expense Totals

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Total Revenue $292,555 $199,496 $194,488
Total Expenses $122,055 $151,529 $215,475

Prior Three Years Revenue Sources

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
-- -- --
Government Contributions $0 $0 $0
    Federal -- -- --
    State -- -- --
    Local -- -- --
    Unspecified $0 $0 --
Individual Contributions $292,112 $167,093 $190,039
Indirect Public Support $0 $0 --
Earned Revenue $0 $0 --
Investment Income, Net of Losses $0 $0 --
Membership Dues $0 $0 --
Special Events $-1,621 $32,403 $4,449
Revenue In-Kind -- -- --
Other $2,064 $0 --

Prior Three Years Expense Allocations

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Program Expense $72,733 $136,118 $189,463
Administration Expense $26,221 $8,185 $12,791
Fundraising Expense $23,101 $7,226 $13,221
Payments to Affiliates -- -- --
Total Revenue/Total Expenses 2.40 1.32 0.90
Program Expense/Total Expenses 60% 90% 88%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue 8% 4% 7%

Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Total Assets $441,332 $67,485 $17,394
Current Assets $164,553 $67,485 $17,394
Long-Term Liabilities $197,213 $0 $0
Current Liabilities $4,880 $1,206 $0
Total Net Assets $239,239 $66,279 $17,394

Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
1st (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
2nd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
3rd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --

Financial Planning

Endowment Value --
Spending Policy --
Percentage(If selected) --
Credit Line Yes
Reserve Fund Yes
How many months does reserve cover? 6.00

Capital Campaign

Are you currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Capital Campaign Purpose --
Campaign Goal --
Capital Campaign Dates - Dec
Capital Campaign Raised-to-Date Amount --
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? --

Short Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities 33.72 55.96 --

Long Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2015 2014 2013
Long-term Liabilities/Total Assets 45% 0% 0%

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments


Foundation Comments

Financial summary data in the charts and graphs above is per the organization's IRS Form 990s. Contributions from foundations and corporations are listed under individuals when the breakout was not available.

Impact

The Impact tab is a section on the Giving Common added in October 2013; as such the majority of nonprofits have not yet had the chance to complete this voluntary section. The purpose of the Impact section is to ask five deceptively simple questions that require reflection and promote communication about what really matters – results. The goal is to encourage strategic thinking about how a nonprofit will achieve its goals. The following Impact questions are being completed by nonprofits slowly, thoughtfully and at the right time for their respective organizations to ensure the most accurate information possible.


1. What is your organization aiming to accomplish?

 

Amirah exists to provide a refuge for those seeking to break free from exploitation and heal in community on their journey toward lasting hope. The population that we serve are women over the age of 18. Most of the women we work with are from New England and have been stuck in the cycle of exploitation for years. This population has complex trauma, substance abuse addiction, mental health disorders, vocational challenges, social ineptness, and spiritual trauma.

 

The goal for every woman that comes into the Amirah safe home and program is that they would be able to journey from exploitation to liberation. We watch them transform from victim to survivor to thriver. For each woman, our goal is that they would be able to address the trauma they endured in every aspect of their being and work to be healed from that trauma, allowing restoration and reintegration to happen.

The success of Amirah is in both the success of the program, as well as the success of the organization.

For the program, we know we are successful when: 1) we are at full capacity in the safe home (up to 8 women) and 2) we have a cycle of graduates established, forming a community of survivors outside of the safe home. We plan to reach this goal of meeting full capacity by the late spring of 2018. We have already had graduates from the program and are working to support each graduate with her continued success in living life on her own terms, free from the cycle of exploitation.

The most important metrics for tracking our mission will never merely be the quantity of women served, but more so the quality of community care directed toward the transformation of each survivor in Amirah’s care. We believe in making a deep, lasting impact in the lives of the women we are able to serve and support.

The successes within the program are marked in inches of growth as related to the extensive trauma endured by participants. Everything from learning to cook a meal for the first time to acquiring skills for regulating emotions are markers for success for program participants. As she shows this progress, she moves through her program taking on more responsibility for her life and finding more freedom. The goal, as she is given the time and space to heal and work through her program in the safe home, is that she will develop a safe community of support to help her progress and then move out on her own, having this safe community as a continued support for life beyond Amirah. As of the summer of 2017, we have seen this happen with two women so far.

Over this next year, we plan to fill the safe home to capacity and see at least 1-2 more graduates from the program. We are currently working to provide trauma-informed care for the needs of each woman, and are already assessing how to provide this care in a more efficient way. Within the next 5 years, we project that this first safe home will have been able to help over 20 survivors of sexual exploitation achieve lasting transformation and live free from the cycle of exploitation.

For the organization as a whole, our goal is to reduce the cost per woman down to $45,000 or less annually, the national average for safe homes that serve this population. We are projected to meet this goal by the end of the spring in 2018. Once this goal has been met, we will work on expansion to multiple safe home facilities throughout New England.

Another major goal is to provide a refuge for more survivors of exploitation by:

1) opening a second safe home in a different state to duplicate our model of long-term aftercare and meet the growing need across our region
 
2) opening an emergency housing facility for women coming from an immediate situation in need of temporary refuge while their law enforcement partners work to help them maintain initial safety and locate the appropriate long-term facility.
 
We expect to be able to open up both of these facilities within the next five years. 
 

2. What are your strategies for making this happen?

The long-term goals for Amirah are the following:

  1. Fill the safe home to capacity and continue to graduate women from the program
  2. Provide care to over 20 survivors in the next 5 years
  3. Bring average annual cost per woman down to $45,000
  4. Expand and open up a second program home as well as an emergency bed facility 

In order to bring our safe home program to its full capacity, we are working to expand our referral partners. In 2016, we had 57 referral calls, but were only able to have four women come into the home. Unfortunately, most of the referrals change their mind and run prior to us being able to get connected with them for an intake interview. We know that if we can increase the referral numbers, we will be able to increase the number of women ready to make the change in their life and come into a safe home program. In the fall of 2017, the Amirah staff will be speaking to various potential program referral partners throughout New England to expand our reach – some of these potential partners include new law enforcement agents, local hospitals, and social workers, as well as expansion to New Hampshire and Vermont referrals.

Once the home is full, the matter of helping women to graduate from their program happens naturally as each woman engages in her individualized program. We have monthly check-ins with each program participant to make sure she is on track to meet her goals. As the home fills up, the cost per woman decreases, so our organizational goal for becoming more fiscally responsible will be met as we meet the program goal to increase to capacity.

In order to complete our fourth goal of expansion and duplication, we are already beginning to lay the ground work in two different areas where new potential financial support, as well as volunteer support, can be found. Our strategic steps will include building up a task force in each area to begin major fundraising efforts and look for a prime location. Additionally, when the timing is right, we will hire a development person to specifically work on the financial development needed for sustainable funding for both of these endeavors.


3. What are your organization’s capabilities for doing this?

As 2016 came to a close, key members of the Board met to discuss the chief strengths and accomplishments of Amirah in fulfilling its mission to date:

Stephanie Clark, Executive Director

  • Casts vision to attract partners
  • Secures funding and other resources with impressive pace
  • Conducts recruiting, hiring and supervision of staff
  • Organizes systems and people
  • Brings credibility to the organization

 

Heather Thornburg, Program Director

  • Holds strong background in trauma management
  • Evaluates and conducts acceptance and orientation for new participants
  • Leads community of survivors
  • Works and coordinates with partners
  • Crafts policies and programs to guide survivor development

Safe home programming:

  • Careful progress – purposefully slow in order to ensure good growth
  • Community life and code adoption
  • A culture of learning from our mistakes and adjusting
  • Clear offering of unconditional love

Safe home:

  • Good location away from familiar triggers
  • Public transport accessibility
  • Beauty/aesthetics of house = dignity to residents
  • Proximity to hospital and other key partners
  • Makes partner support more viable/convenient
  • Assists staff and volunteer accessibility

We have also developed key strategic referral partners who are the boots on the ground with finding this population that is in need of a program like Amirah.

 

As we look to expand and meet our goals, we know that the capacity we have right now will be stretched appropriately for the staff members. The Executive Director will add more development responsibilities into her portfolio until the time is right to hire Development staff. The Program Director will be a key asset to making sure that the safe home is reaching its capacity and that the program staff are working at full efficiency to help the women progress through their programs.

A unique quality of Amirah is that the vision and mission are matched by the faith of the staff who work each day in this organization. The horrific trauma that a survivor has endured and carries with her into the safe home is met by a program staff member that believes in sacrificial love. This gives us an ability to offer the women that come into this home something they have never had before. Each woman that has come into our home so far has expressed that they “have never been in a program like this.”

Another unique quality that sustains us is the strength of our Amirah Community - our donors and supporters. Because of this community of support, we are able to exist solely on donations from private individuals and institutions. To date, 100% of Amirah’s funding has come in the form of donations from individuals (90%) and institutions (10%). Of the donations that have come in during 2016, 26% are in the form of regular monthly giving from 145 individuals or churches. This form of support has allowed Amirah greater speed, independence and flexibility than is likely to be associated with large foundations or government funding support.

In addition to financial support, members of the Amirah Community serve regularly as volunteers. We currently have 160 volunteers serving in varying capacities for our organization. The majority of the volunteer team are volunteers working in the safe home, providing 13 hours per day, 7 days per week, 365 days per year – a total of 33,215 volunteer hours per year. This supportive Amirah Community enables the organization to carry out our mission with excellence and provides sustainability for the future.


4. How will your organization know if you are making progress?



5. What have and haven’t you accomplished so far?

Starting with less than five people Amirah has grown into a bricks & mortar organization of over 100 people that operates a safe house  has provided advocacy and training programs. With over 100 partners and collaborators, Amirah has been called a national benchmark program for human trafficking victims by the Homeland Security Victim Assistance Coordinator based in Boston.

Specific examples of our recent achievements are:

  • referrals from former program participants
  • referrals from partners we have trained on identification
  • expansion of our services to survivors from the broader New England area, taking referrals from ME, NH, NY, and various parts of MA

 

These great strides have been made possible by the community that has formed around us, as demonstrated by the large percentage of our programming run by volunteers, donated by supporters, and offered by partners for free or at a discount.

Our programs have supported victims and survivors as they have broken free from their exploitation, all the way through to independent and sustainable living. Our model of transformative, whole-person care works, and it works very well. All program participants have reported achieving some of their goals during their time at Amirah’s safe home.

Our vision is to expand Amirah to several safe homes to meet the growing demand for beds designated for survivors. Now that we know our model works well, we are moving to add capacity to first bring sustainability to our current operations, and second, to resource the strategic expansion of our operations.