Coffee, Tea and Justice
Creating a business model that helps trafficking victims start new lives…and helps fund the rescue of more
Question: How can fresh coffee, tea, fresh fruit juice, grilled sandwiches, quesadillas, jams, jewelry and, of course, lots of yummy cakes and muffins, fight human trafficking?
Answer: By providing formerly trafficked girls with new skills to help them find work, and by providing income that is needed to rescue children—some as young as 1 and 2 years old—from the evil employ of those who use them to earn money to feed their drug addictions.
The café is just one way that Nicole and Jason Fitzpatrick, Heaven’s Family missionaries to Mexico, are fighting human trafficking and slavery. Profits help meet the needs of the girls who work in the café and live in a safe house not far away—girls who have been rescued from traffickers.
Nicole told us their “goal is for the café to eventually allow the safe house to become sustainable,” providing rent, food, clothes, medical care and schooling for the girls, “so we can extend our efforts to rescue more girls from this horrendous crime.” From her vantage point living in a country with one of the highest rates of human trafficking in the world, she says “the plague grows daily…It is fast and easy money for a poor unwed mother, drug addict or pedophile,” in a culture that often does not value life.
Nicole went on to say… “[At the safe house] they are kept safe from harm’s way while the perpetrators are either arrested or put through the court system—or grow tired of looking for [the girls]. There we love them, protect them, tell them about Jesus, and help them find healing and forgiveness in Him.
The safe house is also a place of mentoring, discipleship and “big sistering.” Older girls—those who have been rescued from trafficking and who lived with us in Village 1 for many years, receiving much counseling and healing—help “pay it forward” by living at the safe house while they attend college. They know the unimaginable horrors of life as a trafficking victim—the beatings, emotional and sexual abuse, fear and loneliness—and are able to comfort younger girls who find refuge there.
Nicole is tirelessly working to free more girls (and sometimes young boys, who are also prostituted). Their stories are tragic and appalling—but we can do something about it.
Fighting for them,
Jeff and Karin Trotter
Directors, Human Trafficking & Slavery Ministry