Expanding: Child Trafficking Prevention Program

by The Freedom Story (Formerly The SOLD Project)
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Expanding: Child Trafficking Prevention Program
Expanding: Child Trafficking Prevention Program
Expanding: Child Trafficking Prevention Program
Expanding: Child Trafficking Prevention Program
Expanding: Child Trafficking Prevention Program
Expanding: Child Trafficking Prevention Program
Expanding: Child Trafficking Prevention Program
Expanding: Child Trafficking Prevention Program
Expanding: Child Trafficking Prevention Program

We’re thrilled to share some good news: our Chiang Rai City Center expansion has been fully funded for the next two years!  

This was made possible by three groups of generous supporters.

Individual donors continue to be the financial backbone of our work. Through our sharing of the powerful stories of the children and youth we work with (made possible by donors), more and more creative and compassionate people have continued to be inspired to act, and this action makes our work possible. 

At the end of 2015, One Day’s Wages (ODW) joined with us in a matching campaign. ODW is a grassroots movement of people, stories, and actions to alleviate extreme global poverty. Thanks to ODW’s fantastic team, SOLD’s dedicated supporters, and the generosity of many donors, we not only met our goal but exceeded it! 

At the beginning of 2016, we received a generous grant from The Wyss Foundation. After a successful career in life-saving medical science, Hansjorg Wyss created the Wyss Foundation in 1998 to support innovative, lasting solutions that improve lives, empower communities, and strengthen connections to the land. We’re thrilled and grateful to have The Wyss Foundation partner in our work.

The support we receive from individual donors, movements, and foundations makes our work possible. But it goes further in inspiring all of us at SOLD to work our hardest to actualize our mission through the effective and efficient use of the resources we have been entrusted with to prevent child trafficking and exploitation. While we are thankful that our expansion has been funded, we continue to rely on the support of generous and passionate people in our work to prevent child exploitation. 

Thank you for partnering with us, and may we all continue to seek justice for the vulnerable. 

Rachel Goble, President, and The SOLD Project Team

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Our International Liaison: Lisa
Our International Liaison: Lisa

Dear Friends,

We are so excited that this space is now open to our students, their families, and the community at large! We still have a long way to go in terms of furnishing, but we wanted to share with you some photos of the space. (See below.)

We’re excited to have a new International Liaison: Lisa.

Lisa is responsible for facilitating contact between The SOLD Project’s U.S. and Thailand offices. She provides information about various aspects within branches of the organization in order to maintain a professional and positive work environment between the Thai and U.S. personnel. Lisa will be working at the City Center as well as teaching English classes for both our staff and students. She will also be collecting data such as the number of students who attend certain activities, whether they are scholarship or non-scholarship students and whether or not the program was successful. The data Lisa collects helps measure our impact, so that we can remain lean and efficient in reaching more students and people in the community as well as in telling the story of SOLD.

I recently interviewed Lisa and am excited to share her thoughts about the City Center with you all.

What are you most looking forward to with the City Center?

I’m most looking forward to getting to meet the girls and older kids that will come to the center. I am excited about teaching them as well! I will get to teach them English, but also other activities on Saturdays. I would love to work with them on music and dance. It would be really fun to teach them to play an instrument! I hope to find some ukuleles. I think they would enjoy that. I’m also looking forward to the garden in the back. It’s such a lovely outdoor space, and I think having an organic garden will be fun for the kids and for me as well. I am looking forward to helping with the garden and learning how to grow different types of food.

Why do you think having the City Center is important?

It’s important because the older children go to high school in the city, away from their villages, and are too far away to attend the Resource Center activities. It’s important that they continue to have mentorship, especially in high school as their lives are starting to change as they mature. The City Center will provide them with resources right in the city, where it’s accessible for them to get support!

In conversations with the students, what do they tell you about the City Center or how do they feel about having this second center?

I have only talked with a few girls, but they seemed excited to have this space, to meet me, and to practice their English. They said they were looking forward to learning with me!

What is your favorite room in the City Center - or when it's furnished, what do you think your favorite room will be? 

My favorite room would actually be the outside! I love the backyard and can’t wait until it’s turned into a garden, and I am really looking forward to helping with that. I also like the counseling room. I think it will be really nice when it’s finished. I picture it being a peaceful and relaxing room where the kids feel comfortable sharing or just hanging out!

 

Our next steps are fundraising for furnishing the center and for hiring part-time staff for tutoring and art activities. Thank you so much for all of your support in helping us disrupt child exploitation through prevention.


With hope,

Alaynah Fiedler

U.S. Operations Manager

Our future computer room.
Our future computer room.
Our future library.
Our future library.
The kitchen will host cooking activities.
The kitchen will host cooking activities.
This is our staff office.
This is our staff office.
Our future organic garden.
Our future organic garden.
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Cat presenting to an Activist Vision Trip group.
Cat presenting to an Activist Vision Trip group.

In our last project report, we mentioned how Cat, our first scholarship student, gave us feedback about expanding to Chiang Rai City. We found a building and we are thrilled to announce that we will be opening the City Center next month. This means Cat, and all of our high school and university students, will now have a safe place they can go to for resources and mentorship.

Our students cannot wait for the city center to open. We wanted to share with you some of their thoughts:

Cat, 12th grader: “You should hurry - open the city center before I graduate high school!”  
Dream, 1st year University: “We are lucky that SOLD will be opening the city center soon!”
Lek*, 1st year Vocational College: “When can I start going to the city center? (She asks [with a huge smile] every time she attends the Resource Center’s activities.)
Pim*, 4th grader: “Can the little kids go to city center too?” 

*Names have been changed to protect the anonymity of the underage students.

The city center is scheduled to open the second week of October. This is the first school break for our students so it will be a wonderful time for the students to check out the new location. We will also have an open house day for all of the students, parents, and local organizations to visit the city center during the first week. Everyone will get to meet our staff and learn more about the resources we offer. We are thrilled to open up this space to everyone in the community.

In order to prepare for the opening, we are currently working on cleaning and furnishing the building. We will be making our first staff hire, the Program Officer, in the next week. The Program Officer’s salary will be $500 per month so this is our next fundraising goal. The Program Officer will be in charge of managing all of the programs and activities at the Chiang Rai City Resource Center as well as oversee all of the staff.

Since SOLD’s beginning, we have dreamed about opening up a second Resource Center in order to deepen relationships with our students. Thank you for all of your support in making this dream become a reality.


With hope and gratitude,

Alaynah Fiedler

U.S. Operations Manager

Some of our older students at the Resource Center.
Some of our older students at the Resource Center.
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One of our scholarship students, Cat
One of our scholarship students, Cat

Cat, pictured above, was SOLD’s very first scholarship student. She was first given a scholarship in 2007 when she was in primary school. Cat was able to attend our Resource Center activities on a daily basis because her school was right across the street from the Resource Center. Cat is now in 12th grade and has a hard time traveling to the Resource Center as it is far away from her high school. The Resource Center is far removed from the city – in the rural village where many of our now higher education students studied for their primary education. In a recent interview with Cat, she mentioned that she would love it if SOLD would expand to Chiang Rai City in order for her and the other students studying at the high school and university level to have a safe and fun learning environment. We listened to her feedback and created our expansion program for 2015.

We are thrilled to announce that we have received a very generous monthly donation (via check) that will cover one hundred percent of our rent for the city center! This is the first step in our expansion program and we could not be more thankful for all of your support. We have found a building for our city center and we are currently in the process of signing the lease. The building is located across the road from one of the high schools many of our students attend. It is three stories with four rooms and three and a half bathrooms. This building will allow for a fun learning environment as well as a private room for counseling.

After we secure the building, the next step is to begin to hire staff and mentors for the center which will include a program director and a program officer that will oversee the after school program. These next steps are all dependent on funding, and we will need $1,500/month to hire a mentor and admin assistant for the new program.

Your gifts are enabling us to grow with students like Cat in order to provide the support for situations that puts a high school or university student at risk such as unhealthy relationships, living apart from family, lack of mentorship, etc. We’re honored and encouraged by your belief and investment in SOLD’s work to prevent child exploitation.

Thank you!
With hope,

Alaynah Fiedler

U.S. Operations Manager

Front of the building
Front of the building
One of the rooms in the building
One of the rooms in the building
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Organization Information

The Freedom Story (Formerly The SOLD Project)

Location: Oakland, CA - USA
Website:
Project Leader:
Alaynah Fiedler
Pleasanton, CA United States

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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