Help a Trafficking Survivor Heal From Her Trauma

by Lotus Outreach
Help a Trafficking Survivor Heal From Her Trauma
Help a Trafficking Survivor Heal From Her Trauma
Help a Trafficking Survivor Heal From Her Trauma
Help a Trafficking Survivor Heal From Her Trauma
Help a Trafficking Survivor Heal From Her Trauma
Help a Trafficking Survivor Heal From Her Trauma
Help a Trafficking Survivor Heal From Her Trauma
Help a Trafficking Survivor Heal From Her Trauma

Content Warning: Report contains sexual assault

Srey Nuch* is 12 years old, in the second grade. When her parents recently divorced, she chose to live with her mother. Soon after, both of her parents were remarried and her stepfather came to live with Srey and her mother. Srey Nuch immediately felt uncomfortable around her stepfather, she found him staring at her frequently and he would make physical contact that she was uneasy with.

One day, Srey Nuch’s mother went to work and she was left alone with her stepfather. He forced himself on Srey and raped her. This happened three times. Srey was helpless and terrified, but each time, he threatened to kill her if she told anyone.  Scared for her life, Srey Nuch hid the incidents from everyone, including her mother. A few weeks later, her stepfather had a dispute with a neighbor. Srey, witnessing his behaviour and unable to endure another attack, decided to tell her mother about what had happened. Srey Nuch’s mother immediately reported her husband to the police, and the family received an intervention from local authorities. He was arrested by the police and sent to court, while Srey Nuch was sent to our safe shelter for protection and healing. 

When Srey Nuch arrived at the shelter, she felt uneasy in the new environment and told her mother that she wished to return home after getting her health examination results. Her mother persuaded Srey to stay at the shelter with other girls rather than being home alone while she was away at work. Srey Nuch agreed to stay at the shelter but was understandably downtrodden and missed her mother. 

After a few sessions, counselors began to notice a change in Srey Nuch’s behavior. She started to connect more with people around her and attended group counseling and weekly meetings. She started opening up about her past with her peers. At the court date, Srey spoke in front of the judge and all present for the trial. Her case closed with her stepfather, the perpetrator, being sentenced to nine years in jail. Srey Nuch is staying at the safe shelter, continuing to heal with the support of counselors and other community members and has enrolled in a public school nearby as well. We are confident that Srey has the support she needs to move forward in a healthy environment.


Thank you for your support.


Srey Nuch* is a name given by the writer. Her real name is hidden to protect her privacy in accordance with the child protection policy.


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International Women's Day celebration
International Women's Day celebration

Content Warning: Sexual Assault

Chenda* is 12 years old and lives in Banteay Meanchey Province. She was born into a low income family and has not been enrolled in school since she was much younger. Chenda is the 3rd child among 4 children in her family and she was always helpful around the house and kind to her siblings.

Chenda currently resides at the CWCC safe shelter for survivors of abuse and other trauma. Chenda came to the shelter after she was raped by her father 3 times when her mother was out of the house. Her father threatened to beat or kill her if she told anyone, especially her mother. Some time later, Chenda’s Uncle noticed that she was acting strangely and looked frightened and pale, so he asked what was wrong with her and why she was acting like this. At first, she didn’t want to tell her Uncle the truth and tried to avoid him, but her Uncle persisted and asked her again and again.

Chenda finally decided to tell the truth about what had happened to her. Her uncle immediately filed a complaint against Chenda’s father to the local authorities for intervention. Shortly thereafter, Chenda’s father was arrested by the police and sent to prison while Chenda was sent to CWCC safe shelter in Banteay Meanchey to await the trial.

When she first arrived at the safe shelter she was fearful and didn't get along smoothly with other people at the shelter. The counselor worked hard to build trust and confidence with Chenda. She encouraged her to take time for self-reflection and connected her to other girls in the shelter. After a while, Chenda felt more comfortable and started to find it easier to get along with other girls through group counseling and participating in shelter activities.

Currently, she’s still residing in the shelter where her healing and support are the priority. Her overall health is fine, both physically and emotionally. She is also attending vocational training inside the shelter, participating in sewing and fashion design classes. CWCC staff will continue to assist her and support her in her healing process in all the ways that they are able.

Thank you for supporting the wellbeing of survivors like Chenda. With the support of a safe and caring community, we hope that they may all heal and move forward into bright futures with confidence and determination. 

*Chenda is a name given by the writer to protect her privacy in according to child protection policy of CWCC.

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Beauty Skill Training
Beauty Skill Training

When Borey[1] was 13, she got drunk with a group of girlfriends and some boys at one of the boys' rented home. After some time, the boys shooed Borey’s friends away so they were alone with her. Two boys allegedly raped her while the others made a video.

Borey’s parents were divorced, and she lived with her paternal grandmother and her two siblings. At the time, she was in ninth grade. When she returned home she didn’t tell anyone. Soon after, however, the video had been uploaded online and her face was visible, clearly showing her identity. She was worried her family would see the video and blame her so she decided to tell them what happened from her side. The family decided to make a complaint but rather than going to the police, they went to our local partner Cambodian Women's Crisis Center (CWCC) to ask for advice.

Sokny, the project counselor, involved anti- trafficking police and showed them the video. Police interviewed the boys involved and they did a forensic exam on Borey. They decided there were no grounds for a criminal case as, in the video, the girl did not seem to resist in any way. They suggested monetary compensation, but the girl was defamed and was only seeking to protect herself against being blamed by her family for the incident- Borey felt all of her friends and society blamed her, she stopped going to school and felt humiliated due to the shame and discrimination that followed.

In December 2019 Borey entered the safe shelter. At the beginning she was very angry, embarrassed and suicidal. Initially, counseling reduced her anger and shame but she was still not willing to discuss her story, instead telling other shelter survivors she was there for a different reason. In the first month at the shelter, she decided not to return to school. She requested to pursue beauty skills training instead and entered into the training program in January.

It has been several months since she joined the shelter, and her behaviour is beginning to change. She's learned to accept her experience and has developed a sense that she can start over. She's been doing chores and cooperating with others and seems overall less angry. She has become a nice and cooperative person. Her family, who felt that she was wild and had brought all this upon herself, are very surprised at how quickly she has moved forward. She has recently changed her mind with respect to schooling too and  wants to continue with her education in the new academic year November 2020.

Thank you for giving. Your support provides a safe and healing space for these girls to move forward.  


[1] Borey is a name given by the writer. Her real name is hidden to protect her privacy in accordance with the child protection policy of CWCC. 


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Doing crafts under guidance of teacher
Doing crafts under guidance of teacher

Nine year old Srey Touch* lives in Krong Serei Sophorn, Banteay Meanchey province. She has two siblings and is in the second grade. 

Her mother divorced her father and then remarried, leaving Srey Touch to live with an old grandmother. Unfortunately, her grandmother passed away and Srey Touch moved in with her uncle who was married with three children. Then, in 2019, her uncle divorced his wife, leaving Srey Touch and her uncle to stay alone at home. 

At first, her uncle took care of her as his daughter, providing advice and encouraging her to study hard. Later on, his behavior changed. Many times he attempted to rape her, threatening her not to tell anyone. 

One day, Srey Touch told her friends at school because she couldn’t stand it anymore. After sharing with her friends, the police were brought in and her uncle was arrested and sent to court. Srey Touch has been referred by the authorities to stay in our safe shelter where she is awaiting the trial.

At the shelter, she first felt fearful of a new place and had trouble getting along with others. The counselor began to build a relationship with her in order to build trust and confidence. She helped Srey Touch to do self-reflection and to connect her with the others in the shelter. 

Srey Touch began to feel more comfortable, making connections with others through group counseling and participating in shelter activities. Currently, she lives in the shelter and both her physical and emotional health have vastly improved. She is attending second grade at the public school nearest the shelter. Our staff will continue to assist and follow up with her.

Thank you for helping girls like Srey Touch.


*Srey Touch is a name given by the writer. Her real name is hidden to protect her privacy in accordance with the child protection policy of CWCC.

Art therapy with the program counselor
Art therapy with the program counselor
Small group of children doing art therapy
Small group of children doing art therapy


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Consoling Through Counseling provides trauma therapy, social assistance, and small business grants to survivors of human trafficking, sexual abuse and domestic violence residing in a women's shelter in rural Cambodia. We are happy to report: 

  • There have been ten new survivors and two relatives referred to stay in the CWCC’s Banteay Meanchey safe shelter. Adding to the existing six, there are now a total of 15 survivors under our care.
  • The counselor spent over 50 hours providing individual counseling sessions to those staying in the shelter. Among the 14 survivors to receive this counseling, six were victims of human trafficking and exploitation, five were victims of sexual abuse and three were victims of domestic violence.
  • Small group counselling was also provided to survivors (and some relatives) at the shelter. 
  • One survivor of sexual abuse was reintegrated to her home in Malai district, Banteay Meanchey province. She also received a life start-up support from the project to buy food commodities.
  • Two follow-up visits were made with four reintegrated survivors, two of which are now living in houses of their own, while one survivor works as the hostess in a restaurant in Siem Reap, and another lives with her Aunt and works in a bakery shop in Phnom Penh. The reintegration officer found that all of them have lived happily with their families and relatives in their community and will look to close these cases in the next quarter.

We are so encouraged to see so many survivors making huge steps to improve their lives, both physical and psychological. Thank you for supporting Consoling Through Counseling. 


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Organization Information

Lotus Outreach

Location: Ojai, California - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @lotusoutreach
Project Leader:
Maya Norbu
Ojai, CA United States
$27,282 raised of $30,000 goal
622 donations
$2,718 to go
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