A HOLISTIC PROGRAM TO ABOLISH DOMESTIC MINOR SEX TRAFFICKING:A GRANT PROPOSAL Kiri Cohu California State University, Long Beach May, 2012
The Problem • Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking (DMST) • “The commercial sexual exploitation of American children within U.S. borders. It is the ‘recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for the purpose of a commercial sex act’ where the person is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident under the age of 18 years” (Smith, Vardaman, & Snow, 2009, p. iv; VTVPA, 2000). • An estimated 244,000-325,000 American youth are vulnerable to DMST each year (Estes & Weiner, 2002). • Risk is increased if a youth has a history of sexual abuse, a history within the foster care system and/or a history of running away (Fong & Cardoso, 2010; Twill, Green, & Traylor, 2010). • At both the national level, as well as throughout California, there is a paucity of programs that provide specialized and intensive care for DMST survivors (Kalergis, 2009; Kotrla, 2010).
Program Goals • Goal #1: To support and empower survivors of DMST in the healing process so that, through the restoration of mental health and cultivation of vital life skills, they can reach their full potential. • Goal #2: To eradicate DMST in Los Angeles County through education and raising awareness about DMST among professional children’s social workers as well as within local communities.
Multi Cultural Social Work Relevance • DMST is “the most hidden form of child abuse in the United States” (NASW, 2001, p.1). • Children of color are disproportionally victimized by DMST • African American children comprise 25% of the victims of DMST nationally and 78% in Los Angeles County (ICAN, 2011). • There is extreme marginalization and lack of services for boys and transgender youth victimized by DMST (Estes & Weiner, 2002). • Social workers have the potential to play a vital role in the provision of specialized and trauma-informed services for survivors of DMST (Fong & Cardoso, 2010).
Methods • Target Population • Children and youth between the ages of 10-17 served by the Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). • Strategies used to identify and select a funding source • Use of the Foundation Database at the Long Beach Nonprofit Partnership. • In-depth comparison and examination of top five potential funding sources, resulting in the selection of The Stuart Foundation. • The Stuart Foundation • Committed to enhancing the lives of children and youth by supporting and promoting healthy families, creating positive learning environments and investing in children and youth services (Stuart Foundation, 2009). • Focused on California and Washington. • A history of giving substantial grants that would be more than sufficient to cover the proposed budget of the program
Methods • Needs Assessment • The primary sources with statistical data documenting the extent and scope of DMST in Los Angeles County were the State of California Department of Justice, and the Los Angeles County Probation Department. • The grant writer also attended several conferences and trainings on DMST in Los Angeles. • Projected Budget • The proposed total program cost is $123,823.04 • Total Salaries and Benefits - $73,220.00 • Total Direct Program Expenses - $23,820.00 • Total Indirect Program Expenses - $26,783.04 • Total In-Kind Resources - $42,000.00
Grant Proposal • Program Summary and Description • A holistic prevention and aftercare program • Trauma-informed mental health services, intensive case management, academic support, life skills, and job training • Specialized training for children’s social workers • Education and awareness raising for the community • Population Served • Survivors of DMST (ages 10-17) within the care of the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services • Sustainability • Strong research design for the program evaluation • Diversifying funding sources through a four-pronged approach • Networking with foundations and corporations • Presenting at Rotary Clubs and other societies • Partnering with universities and community based agencies • Recruiting volunteers.
Grant Proposal • Program Objectives • Program participants will experience a 25% reduction in PTSD symptoms within one year • Program participants will experience a 30% reduction in depressive symptoms within one year • Program participants will experience a 35% increase in self-esteem within one year • Fifty percent of participants will increase by one grade level within one year. • Within one year, 40% of participants, ages 14-17, will receive a certificate of completion for life skills development • Within one year, 40% of the children’s social workers in SPA 8, and their supervisors, will have increased knowledge concerning the dynamics and contributing factors to DMST and understand current treatment interventions. • Within one year, 5% of the families living in SPA 8 will have an increased awareness of signs and risk factors related to DMST • Program Evaluation • The effectiveness of this program will be evaluated based on a mixed method research design. • An independent evaluator will be hired to analyze the data and report the outcomes of the program’s first year.
Lessons Learned and Implications for Social Work • A vital part of the grant writing process is networking and building relationships with staff members at foundations, corporations and other potential funding sources. • There is an art to designing a budget that both sufficiently provides for programming needs and is also deemed reasonable by the potential funding source. • Grant writing is an invaluable component of effectively developing and sustaining effective social services programs. • DCFS needs to update their intake tools in order to increase proper identification of children victimized by DMST. This will greatly improve DCFS’ effectiveness in providing appropriate and specialized services to this population.
References • Estes, R. J., & Weiner, N. A. (2002). The commercial sexual exploitation of children in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Philadelphia, PA: The University of Pennsylvania. • Fong, R. & Cardoso, J.B. (2010). Child human trafficking victims: Challenges for the child welfare system. Evaluation and Program Planning 33, 311-316. • ICAN. (2011). ICAN task force on the commercial exploitation of children. Retrieved from http://ican4kids.org/documents/CSEC_Taskforce_Report_Draft.pdf • Kalergis, K. I. (2009). A passionate practice: Addressing the needs of commercially sexually exploited teenagers. Affilia, 24(3), 315-315-324. doi:10.1177/0886109909337706. • Kotrla, K. (2010). Domestic minor sex trafficking in the United States. Social Work, 55(2), 181-187. • National Association of Social Workers. (2001, September 10). Commercial child sexual exploitation: “The most hidden form of child abuse,” says NASW member Richard Estes. Retrieved from http://www.naswdc.org/pressroom/2001/091001.asp • Smith, L.A., Vardaman, S. H., & Snow, M.A. (2009). The national report on domestic minor sex trafficking: America’s prostituted children. Retrieved from http://www.sharedhope.org/Portals/0/Documents/SHI_National_Report_on_DMST_ 2009.pdf • Twill, S. E., Green, D. M., & Traylor, A. (2010). A descriptive study on sexually exploited children in residential treatment. Child & Youth Care Forum, 39(3), 187-199. • Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000, Pub. L. No. 106-386, 114 Stat. 1464 (2000).