We're Having Good Problems. Will you be the solution?
We’re having good problems at Unconditional.
We’ve had so many women in need of assistance, we don’t have the capacity to meet all the needs.
We’ve had so many women refer coworkers to us, that we’re struggling to keep up.
Last week, we helped two women who needed help transitioning out of the industry.
This week, we’ve already had another two reach out for support in their transition.
Women leaving their jobs is not our goal. Our primary goal is to be the bridge between the commercial sex industry and the church.
But the reality is, for women who are in the commercial sex industry due to circumstance or coercion, it can be nearly impossible to leave.
Take a moment to put yourself in her shoes.
Imagine that you want to change jobs, but no matter how bad you want it, it seems like there isn’t a way out. It is difficult to find a service provider who will help you transition out, and not judge you. Not to mention a service provider who doesn’t need proof of income (sometimes difficult to prove in an all cash job), wont assume you’re on drugs (a constant stigma women in the industry battle), or threaten to take your kids away due to your job (yes, this happens frequently, even in the legal part of the sex industry). Imagine feeling scared to be open, because in your experience sex workers are not believed or taken seriously. Your primary experience with people when you’ve talked about your job has been condemnation or insulting pity.
So you can imagine why a work force development program that is survivor centered, trauma informed, and is educated about the industry would feel like a life raft.
I can list off women who have told me they want to apply to Equip 360 as soon as it starts.
Some are already recruiting friends to join them in applying.
I’ve had people ask me, “Why do we need another work force development program?”
Again, put yourself in her shoes.
When you are coming out of the adult entertainment or sex industry, little to no one in the rest of the world understands. People dont feel safe to open up to. Sometimes jobs and programs will sexually harass you once they find out where you used to work. They assume because you were once a sex worker, you can’t tell them no or you won’t be believed. Many jobs won’t hire you at all due to the gaps in your resume or past employment.
Working in the industry, you made decent or really good money, and are now dropping to poverty level once you leave. If you don’t have your high school diploma, this risk increases.
If you have worked in the industry for years, transitioning to other work also means large gaps on your resume. If you choose to put that you worked in the club, you’ll likely be faced with discrimination, stereotypes, and/or sexually harassed. Equip 360 will not only provide transitional support, but work experience at a partner business, Trace Fashion. Trace Fashion is educated about the sex industry, providing a safe place for women to work after leaving.
The support you need, the obstacles you face, and the strengths you have are incredibly unique. We have worked tirelessly for the past six and a half years to understand this industry’s culture, to build friendships, and to truly listen.
We can boldly say that we will meet a unique need that impacts thousands of women in our city, for which there currently is no solution.
I want to no longer scramble and try to put together options for women who approach me, when I know Equip 360 would be the solution for many.
I want to tell women a solid start date, not a “Well, when we’re funded” story line.
There is not another paid work force development program in Indiana for women coming out of the commercial sex industry, with wrap around services of case management, community, and mental health focus. In the entire country, I know of less than twenty. Most of these primarily focus on human trafficking, leaving women in the commercial sex industry out.
Another question I get is, “Are there even enough people this issue affects?”
Each month, we meet with over 170 women within six strip clubs on one shift on one night in Indianapolis.
There are nineteen strip clubs in Indianapolis, with typically two to three shifts of workers at each club seven days a week.
You do the math.
Add in the thousands of women that escort, cam model, are in porn, or prostitute in Indianapolis.
Add in the surrounding cities of Bloomington, Anderson, and Kokomo where the industry thrives.
Add in the suburbs of Greenwood, Greenfield, Carmel, Fishers, Avon.
This isn’t a small demographic. Chances are, you have a sex worker in your life that you may not know that is what she does on the side or for a living.
To meet the needs of these women that we have built life transforming friendships with, we have to get fully funded to launch Equip 360.
If we increase our monthly giving by $5,000 this summer, we can hire another full time employee and start aggressively going after our goal of starting Equip 360.
We need monthly donors at the $35, $50, $100, $300, and $500 level.
Sign up today to be a donor: unconditionalministries.com/donate and be a part of the solution to the problems we’re having.
If you have more questions about our organization, I would be happy to meet with you. When you sign up to be a monthly donor, make sure to include your address so we can send you a donor thank you package!
We are thrilled by what God is doing in Unconditional. We love that so many women are reaching out. But we have to be able to provide more in order to help our friends.
Thank you for believing.
Founder and CEO