Muskogee Group To Open Shelter For Survivors Of Human Trafficking
MUSKOGEE, Oklahoma - A Muskogee non-profit group is just days away from opening a home built for young victims of human trafficking.
"We have kids who are being hurt every day,” said Keri Spencer as she broke down in tears.
Spencer is the founder of Rise, a shelter for girls ages twelve to eighteen who are the victims of human trafficking.
"Kids who have been let down by every adult in their life and they need somebody,” Spencer stated. “To stand by them for as long as it takes, for as difficult as it will be, to make sure that they get to be who they were put here to be because it wasn't to be bought and sold."
The house is the first of its kind in Oklahoma for young girls, and Spencer says she's anxious to get the first girls moved in.
"Everybody associated with Rise is committed to just giving them a space where they can overcome everything that has happened to them and not be defined by it,” she explained.
The home can house six girls. Each will have their own bedroom, decorated by community members.
The house has a library, several community spaces, a gym, and kitchen, all made possible by donations.
Rise also partnered with Muskogee Public Schools so the girls can finish school online.
"We provide them all of the tools they need to be able to set goals and set dreams for themselves and actually be able to achieve those and that when they leave Rise they are able to live independently,” said Spencer.
Spencer says therapy is a big part of helping the girls rise through the traumatic experiences they've been through.
The girls don't pay a penny to live at Rise, and Spencer says they are welcome to stay as long as they need.
"That they see their value, that they see their worth, that they see they are more than any of the things that have been done to them,” Spencer stated.
The doors are set to open here at Rise in the next few weeks.
If you would like to donate, visit Rise.