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This training has ended, please see our online training for recorded sessions and upcoming Girl Empowerment Training.

Check out Bridging the Gap-Oregon, a collaborative project to meet the immediate needs of sexually exploited victims.

When a sexually exploited victim is rescued, she/he is in need of basic necessities: food, clothes, hygiene items and safe shelter. If adequate resources are provided for the victim, she feels valued, cared for, and secure. Experience and research shows that trafficked victims who get their immediate needs met have a much higher success rate of getting out of the life and not ending up back with their trafficker. Creating a wrap around care support system as soon as possible is critical for survivors. This also leads to cooperation with law enforcement, which significantly increases the chances of trafficker prosecution. Find out how Bridging the Gap is working to solve this Dilemma and how you can help:

Tuesday May 14th  11:00am-5:30pm

11:00am-12:00pm - Lunch Provided

12:00-12:10pm Welcome: Darlene Domenigoni, MSC Director and President, Bridging the Gap-Oregon

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12:10-12:45pm Overcoming Adversity: Leanne- Survivor Leader, Real Estate Broker

Business owner, wife, and mom to 3 beautiful daughters. Leanne is a survivor of every form of abuse and exploitation, which began at age 3. She lived on the streets from age 11-12, stole and did whatever she had to do in order to eat and survive, witnessing killings and drive-by shootings. She was then put in (another) foster home and her new ‘family” became a local gang. She was transferred to more than 7 foster homes and ended up with a severe eating disorder. Leanne shares powerful and real insight stemming from her many years of street life and personal pain as well as the women she has had the privilege to mentor.  Leanne draws her strength from God's redeeming love and grace and many years of therapy, Mending the Soul, Neurofeedback, and Jesus. God is using Leanne's story of abuse and pain to bring healing to many others.  "Mending the Soul and Mentor Support Collaborative has changed my life! Today, Leanne is a highly successful business woman and giving back in many ways. She uses her story and trauma informed care training to serve in the Live Love NW Anti-Sex Trafficking Program.

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12:45-1:45pm Understanding Complex Trauma: Bekah Stines, MA, LPC, Western Psychological, MTS PL/PF Director, MSC Team

Bekah works as a mental health trauma counselor in Portland, Oregon where she lives with her husband, Michael, and their three children. She has worked in a variety of settings including community mental health agencies, schools, and private practice. Rebekah is very involved with a local non-profit, Mending the Soul, since 2010 when she started as a group participant and currently serves as the Princess Lost & Found Program Director offering trainings to lay mentors, church leaders, and non-profits both domestic and globally.

In order to create a safe space for others who have experienced abuse and trauma, we must first have a basic understanding and foundation of the impact of trauma and abuse on the brain, body, and heart.  In this 4 part session we will explore the psychoeducation and latest social science research around topics such as the 5 types of abuse, cycle of abuse, trauma bonds, and typical behavioral responses to trauma.  We will also process the complexities of providing trauma informed care, how to create safety for abuse survivors, and form a wrap-around team of support. We will also discuss ways to integrate a faith-based model of healing with practical interventions while maintaining safety for survivors and healthy boundaries for a sustainable relationship.

1:45-2:00pm Break

2:00-3:00pm Understanding Complex Trauma Cont’d

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3:00-4:00pm Mentoring Complex Trauma Survivors One on One: Angela Miller, LiveLove NW Anti-Sex Trafficking Program Coordinator, MSC Team

Angie has been mentoring youth and young adults for almost 3 decades, with a focus on helping sexually abused and traumatized people find true healing, freedom, and restoration. In more recent years, she felt called to focus specifically on women who have been trapped in the life of trafficking. She dedicates most of her free time working with the Mentor Support Collaborative, training others, and helping survivors heal through the Survivor Support Ministry she leads. Married to her husband Rich for 32 years, her pride and joy are her two sons, daughter-in-law, and two year old grandson- who has her wrapped around his little finger.

The Mentor Support Collaborative is committed to teaching trauma informed best practices. We are seeing incredible transformation in survivors who have a trauma informed counselor, healthy trained mentor, and a wrap around support team.  In this training, we’ll dive into mentoring survivors one on one and what it means to humbly mirror unconditional love and compassion, while building self esteem, community, recognizing regression and progression, while working together with community partners, one step at a time.

4:00-4:15pm Break

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4:15-5:30pm Recognizing And Responding To Human Trafficking In The Healthcare Industry: Victim Centered Protocols, Procedures, Resources:

Melinda West, Founder of Freedom Calling; MSC Team

Melinda is happily married to her husband of 27 years and has 2 beautiful adult daughters. She has worked in the healthcare industry for over 20 years and has a bachelor’s degree in health care administration. Throughout her career she has held positions within primary care provider clinics, Oregon Health Authority/State of Oregon Medicaid division, oral health management organizations and as an independent consultant. She was a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician for Molalla Fire Department from 2010-2014.

Melinda is the founder of Freedom Calling of Oregon, which raises awareness of the issue of human sex trafficking in churches all over the state of Oregon.

 

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Sarah Tiffany, Physical Therapist

Sarah has been passionate about bringing awareness of human trafficking to the healthcare field for over six years. Starting in 2013 she founded In It To End It, a club at Washington State University to raise awareness at the University level. Since moving to Portland in 2016 for physical therapy school, she has continued reaching out to local advocates, doing guest lectures at Pacific University,  and completing the Mentor Support Collaborative training. Alongside schooling, Sarah has completed the Level 1A pelvic floor rehab training, and is continuing to work on obtaining her pelvic therapy speciality. She receives her doctorate in physical therapy in May 2019. Upon graduation, she looks forward to partnering her passion for pelvic floor rehab to the aftercare of sex trafficking.

Melinda and Tiffany will focus on how vital healthcare workers are in helping identify potential victims of sexual exploitation. In a recent study, over 88% of victims reported they had seen a healthcare provider while being exploited. As healthcare workers, we are on the front line and have the opportunity to identify and connect the most vulnerable population to the appropriate resources.

5:30pm - Closing

Wednesday, May 15th 11:00-5:30pm

11:00am-12:00pm- Lunch Provided

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12:10-12:45pm Overcoming Adversity: Leanne- Survivor Leader, Real Estate Broker

Business owner, wife, and mom to 3 beautiful daughters. Leanne is a survivor of every form of abuse and exploitation, which began at age 3. She lived on the streets from age 11-12, stole and did whatever she had to do in order to eat and survive, witnessing killings and drive-by shootings. She was then put in (another) foster home and her new ‘family” became a local gang. She was transferred to more than 7 foster homes and ended up with a severe eating disorder. Leanne shares powerful and real insight stemming from her many years of street life and personal pain as well as the women she has had the privilege to mentor.  Leanne draws her strength from God's redeeming love and grace and many years of therapy, Mending the Soul, Neurofeedback, and Jesus. God is using Leanne's story of abuse and pain to bring healing to many others.  "Mending the Soul and Mentor Support Collaborative has changed my life! Today, Leanne is a highly successful business woman and giving back in many ways. She uses her story and trauma informed care training to serve in the Live Love NW Anti-Sex Trafficking Program.

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12:45-2:15pm - Engaging Community Partners and Churches in Anti-Trafficking Efforts- Officers Mike Gallagher and Ariana Ridgely, Portland Police Bureau Sex Trafficking Unit, Founder, Bridging the Gap-Oregon

Twenty-six year police officer with the past 9 years in the Portland Police Department Sex Trafficking Unit. Mike has been a pivotal member of the Sex Trafficking Unit and has seen the devastation caused when an individual is forced into a life of sexual exploitation. Mike works to establish relationships with victim-advocate groups, the district attorney’s office, community and church members, and charitable organizations to systemically confront sex trafficking.

Mike is passionate about seeing victims get the help they need to move from victim-to survivor-to thriver. He also works diligently to address the demand side, because eliminating the demand would eradicate sex trafficking. Mike coordinates the SBAD (Sex Buyers Accountability and Diversion) school to educate sex buyers on the damage and destruction their dollar is doing to women, children, their marriage, job, and community.

Mike is also the founder of Bridging the Gap-Oregon, a non-profit created to provide law enforcement and victim advocates with a communication portal to meet victim needs. In May 2015, BTGO leaders were awarded the Portland Police Bureau Commendation Medal for creating the BTGO website, which has provided resources for hundreds of victims.

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Ariana Ridgely-Ofc. Ariana Ridgely has been a Portland Police Bureau officer for 10 years and has been assigned full time to the Sex Trafficking Unit (STU) for the last four years.  During her time with STU, her victim centered approach has enabled the trafficking victims she is working with to trust her and know she is looking out for them and just not looking to make a case at their expense.  Ofc. Ridgely goes out of her way to be available to help and mentor the victims she is working with.  This has resulted in several trafficking victims moving from the life of prostitution to becoming productive members of our community. 

Ofc. Ridgely teaches all over the state, talking to community groups, schools, churches, support groups and Law Enforcement agencies related to the victimization and trauma associated with trafficking.  She is considered an expert in this field and is routinely contacted by local and out-of-state police departments for her assistance in the cases they are working.  Ofc. Ridgely is one of those few officers that has the passion and determination to work anti-trafficking cases and is a mentor/advocate for trafficking victims and survivors. 

Mike and Ariana will share what’s happening in Portland today, ways our youth are being lured into trafficking, and how churches, businesses, non-profit organizations, and other community partners can work collaboratively to help. Mike will also share about the Bridging the Gap mobile app being built to meet the needs of sexually exploited victims in real time.

2:15-2:30pm Break

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2:30-4:00pm “Families in the Life:" Breaking Generational Cycles of Abuse: Christina Causey, Survivor Leader

Christina has been an overcomer from birth. Christina’s mom was a 13-year-old sexually exploited child, whose mother (Christina’s grandmother) was also prostituted. Christina was continuously moved from place to place, only to experience really bad, hateful, and traumatic things. Being a biracial and abandoned child in foster care was extremely tough and created a long term desire of needing to win approval from others. Christina and her 8 younger siblings were eventually adopted by white parents. What she thought was finally the family she had been dreaming of, soon became a nightmare of continuous abuse.

Despite her horrendous childhood, the generational cycle of abuse and commercial sexual exploitation ended with Christina. She is now a role model and magnet for the girls she mentors. She has been a speaker at numerous events encouraging and giving hope to kids living in foster care.

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Robin Miller, Survivor Leader, Case Manager, Janus Youth Programs, EPIK Board Member

Robin has her BS in Social Science from Portland State University. She was born and raised in Vancouver, WA. and currently works as a Case Manager with Janus Youth Programs,  where she provides direct service to commercially sexually exploited (CSE) youth, between the ages of 12-24. Before coming to Janus, she was the Case Manager and mentor at the New Options for Women Program with LifeWorks NW. There, she worked with adult women who experienced commercial sexual exploitation, connecting them to community resources and providing peer support and advocacy.

Ms. Miller regularly presents to a variety of audiences on the issues of commercial sexual exploitation, including buyers enrolled through Multnomah County and LifeWorks NW, Sex Buyers Accountability and Diversion class (“John” School), national conferences, faith based communities, high school faculty, student bodies, and other social service providers. Ms. Miller also serves on the board for EPIK (Every Man Protecting Innocent Kids).

Generational cycles of abuse and other forms of trauma are hard to break, especially when it's all that's been taught or learned by association. Christina and Robin will share what they have learned through both lived experience and the many survivors they have worked with. Gain an understanding of how these traumas impact other family members and how to be intentional about breaking the cycle.

4:00-4:15pm

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4:15-5:15pm Developing a Healthy Volunteer Team and Protocols: Rebecca Bloomfield, Bloomfield Consulting, Director of Peer Support and Development, Responder Life,  MTS Board Member, MSC Team

Rebecca is an expert in counter human trafficking, with over 10 years of experience working directly with survivors, specializing in adolescent girls. She teaches communities, organizations, and leaders in abuse and trauma recovery and trauma informed practices both domestically and internationally that equip caregivers and offer healing to survivors of all types of abuse.  Rebecca also has 4 years experience as a Sexual Assault Resource Center Advocate providing youth with crisis intervention, safety planning, court accompaniment, and emotional support.

What is a healthy leader? We’ll talk about healing from past abuse and trauma, Self Care Practices, Setting Boundaries, Creating a Personal Support and Accountability Team, and developing a healthy training protocols.

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5:15-5:30pm Girl Empowerment Information- Adrienne Livingston, Director Of Anti-Sex Trafficking Initiatives, Worldventure; Co-Author of Girl Empowerment, MSC Team

Adrienne began getting involved in anti-trafficking efforts in 2013. Since then, she has educated over 3,600 adults and 912 youth about human trafficking. She is on the Rotary End Sex Trafficking Now Committee, A Board Member of Mending the Soul, Volunteers of America Oregon, and the Mentor Support Collaborative. She is the past Co-Chair of Multnomah County Victims Services Implementation Team. Her Justice Hope Freedom podcast Www.Justicehopefreedom.Com educates the public about the issue of sex trafficking and exploitation.

The Girl Empowerment Curriculum helps youth leaders address underlying issues that impact girls and make them vulnerable to the lures of traffickers.