New Friends New Life
“New Friends New Life restores and empowers trafficked teen girls and sexually exploited women and their children. By providing access to education, job training, interim financial assistance, mental health and spiritual support, NFNL helps women and their children overcome backgrounds of abuse, addiction, poverty and limited opportunities.”
What a powerful statement, right? That is the mission of New Friends New Life. It was given nonprofit status in January of 2000 as Amy’s friends, but they began helping woman in 1988. The organization was able to provide financial help to more than 87 women in the first five years. That is an incredible feat.
During its first 15 years, they provided necessary resources to thousands of women and girls in their community. Just last year, 30 girls in the Henry Wade Juvenile Detention Center,200 women in Dawson State Jail, 119 women in their own Resource Center, 98 women with their Support Services, 55 women with their intensive Case Management and 155 children in the program. And in 2012, New Friends New Life served approximately 657 teens, women, and their children.
Wow, those numbers really capture the heart. There is so much need for those women to have hope.
How New Friends, New Life Helps
With an organization with such an incredible success, it is essential to have helpful services. New Friends New Life is not in any way lacking in the services department:
- Resource Center: An environment created for women so they can work on improving their lives and the lives of their children. It is open to women still in the sex industry or those seeking to leave. They do not have to be participants or proteges in the New Friends New Life program in order to benefit from the trainings and mentoring offered.
- Women’s Program: NFNL helps women leave the sexually oriented businesses through operating a program of assistance based on expectations of accountability and responsibility on the part of those helped. Participants, called protégés, commit to changing their lifestyles, living within a budget, remaining drug and alcohol-free, and gaining the education or skills needed to acquire conventional employment. As women stabilize their lives, their children’s circumstances and future opportunities drastically improve.
- Children and Youth Program: We are committed to helping the children and youth of NFNL grow and mature emotionally, spiritually, academically, and physically through our services to children and their moms. Protégés and potential protégés are encouraged to bring their children to our Wednesday night meeting. Each week we serve between 20-40 children and youth ranging in age from birth to 18 years of age in programs for preschool, elementary, and middle school/high school students.
- Community Outreach: NFNL serves the community through speaking engagements by staff or graduates of the program. We bring awareness to the issue of commercial sexual exploitation, educate the community about the work of NFNL, and serve as a resource to those wanting to learn more. NFNL also serves incarcerated youth in the Dallas Juvenile Detention Center through facilitating group counseling.
- Women Wanting out of the Sex Industry: Women who want to get out of sexually oriented businesses can hear words of encouragement from women who are or have been protégés here.
Wow, those services are so needed. It’s an incredible thing, truly.
How You Can Help
As you read through those services, if you feel the tug of the Holy Spirit to get involved, here are some ways you can help out and see hearts transformed:
New Friends New Life relies on volunteers, our Circle of Friends, local business and partners, and interns to fulfill the purpose of the organization. There are numerous ways in which you can join the mission of helping women leave the degradation of sexually oriented businesses to build new lives for themselves and their children.
- Serve as the connection for your church or group at a monthly meeting to learn about NFNL needs and mobilize others to volunteer
- Work one-on-one with women in the following areas: GED; college entrance/application; job skills/search; basic computer skills; access to basic services; budget counseling. Once trained, volunteers can set their own schedule.-Help with administrative/office tasks
- Get involved with the Children and Youth Program – we are especially seeking counselors/therapists; fully licensed or intern status
- Become an Education and Employment Advisor
- Become a Parenting Advisor
- Provide a meal for our weekly group meeting
- Serve and clean up meal service at a weekly meeting
- Participate in annual fundraising events, like the Home Tour and Holiday Shoppe, Art Sale, or Spring Luncheon
- Provide employment opportunities for our women through our Business Partnership Model.
- Raise awareness of NFNL and the cause of women in the sex industry. Create your own enjoyable ways to share our message with your friends and invite us to participate.
- Provide a financial gift to support a woman as she transitions from the sex industry. Giving may be done by mail or online.
And that is just a list for volunteer help! They also have internships available that include being a children and youth coordinator, children’s programs internship, and counseling practicum internships. Along with all the things you see, donations are always greatly appreciated to help out a woman that may really need help.
If you’re looking to get involved, find more information, or even just donate to this incredible organization, check out their website at http://www.newfriendsnewlife.org/