The Domino Foundation’s Red Light anti-humantrafficking programme, recently released from Red Light’s ‘restoration’ journey saw two women who took the route to transformation, hope and purpose.

Tracey and Nonhlanhla (not their real names) have travelled with Red Light’s leader, Lauren Cullen, and her team for the past few years. Both women have just finished writing their matric exams and both share a dream of helping others in need.

The one hopes to become a nurse and the other a paramedic. Cullen commented, “As with other sexually-exploited survivors, we reached out to these two ladies and built sustainable relationships with them. They went through our restoration programme where we saw them journey to health and wholeness through individualised and group rehabilitation programmes.

“They were then supported through a reintegration programme to give them the confidence, knowledge, skills and tools to seek employment. We are proud of them and will continue to support them in their next season of life.”

The Domino Foundation welcomes tertiary education sponsorship proposals from individuals or businesses for the two ladies and/or others in the Red Light programme. Cullen said, “We want to partner with others in seeing survivors of sexual-exploitation getting vocational work experience as the ladies continue their journey into freedom.”

Cullen said despite the high rate of physical and sexual abuse, the threat of arrest and imprisonment, substance addiction, and the stigma prostitution carries, exiting the industry can be an overwhelming prospect. Many of the women are hampered by the lack of education, skills or resources, a supportive community, abusive relationships and most are mothers and have a deep sense of isolation and alienation.