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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...

Beyond the Soiled Curtain

By David and Beth Grant
June 6, 2010

The first Project Rescue Home of Hope was opened to be a place of safety, healing and compassionate care. It has grown into a multidimensional rescue ministry for trafficking victims and their children. More then 1,000 victimized women and girls in India, Nepal and Moldova have been helped. Though the ministry has grown to 13 Homes of Hope in nine Eurasian cities — including Bombay, Kolkata, Delhi, Pune, Nagpur and Chisenau, Moldova — it remains a ministry of hope and recovery.  A new outreach to prostituted women and children is being launched in Bangladesh later this year.

Intervention includes efforts to physically rescue women and girls from sexual slavery. Doing so is a complex, drawn-out process that basically encompasses three main elements:

1. We negotiate the release of enslaved women and girls from brothels.
2. We accept into Homes of Hope trafficking victims who’ve been rescued during police raids.
3. We intervene to get children of prostituted women out of the brothels during work hours and into Project Rescue Night-Care Centers.

When a girl’s rescue release is negotiated from the brothels, people assume money is involved. During the first year of Project Rescue’s existence, Bombay Teen Challenge workers paid some of the girls’ “debts” to the brothel owners in order to attain their release. However, it quickly became apparent that this strategy put money back into the hands of organized crime members and procurers to obtain other young sex slaves. As a result, Project Rescue workers now exhaust every means possible in the negotiation process without offering payment. Working relationships have been established with police, brothel owners, madams and even the girls who work in the red-light district. These relationships have been invaluable to ministry and our quest to get girls released. K.K. Devaraj and other Project Rescue workers have become known for their genuine compassion for everyone in the district and their willingness to demonstrate Christ’s love in tangible ways.

As Project Rescue has grown and proven itself to be a credible Christian organization in India, police in several cities now contact Home of Hope administrators when a trafficking raid is conducted and girls are taken into custody.

State-run aftercare for victims rescued in police raids is minimal. Project Rescue intervenes by offering quality aftercare facilities that give women a safe place to recover. The Project Rescue Home of Hope in Pune, India, is a pilot project in partnership with the government. The agreement allows girls to be sent to the Pune Project Rescue Home of Hope for intervention and restoration. If this collaboration is successful, there will be opportunities for expansion.

Intervention also takes place through “night-care centers” in Bombay, Nagpur and Kolkata. Buildings adjacent to the red-light districts provide safe places for the children of enslaved women. The centers are especially critical to vulnerable children, getting them out of their mother’s room when she is servicing customers. Like a traditional day-care facility, the Project Rescue night-care centers offer nourishing food, tutoring, and a place children can sleep. They also learn about God’s love for them and His power to change their circumstances.

From Beyond the Soiled Curtain (Revised Edition) by David and Beth Grant (Springfield, Mo.: Onward Books, 2009). Excerpted with permission.

Assemblies of God missionaries DAVID and BETH GRANT are co-founders of Project Rescue, a ministry of the Assemblies of God. In 2009, Beth Grant became the first credentialed female to serve on the AG's Executive Presbytery.

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