Priscilla’s Story

Finding Peace

Night after night, Priscilla* laid awake thinking about her time being trafficked. All she wanted was to fall asleep and forget—even if it was only for a few hours. Her insomnia, however, gave her even more time to replay traumatic experiences in her head. She was ashamed and desperate to find peace.

It wasn’t until Priscilla came to Willow International’s residential aftercare program that she finally found some relief. With a safe space to heal surrounded by fellow survivors, she began to process her pain. Through both group and one-on-one counseling sessions, she came to understand that it was not her fault that she was trafficked. It was not her fault that she contracted HIV/AIDS. She forgave herself, gained awareness, and worked to move on with her life.

During her six month stay with Willow, Priscilla learned basic life skills, business skills, and healthy ways to cope with past trauma. She successfully reintegrated back into her community and was reunited with her family. With startup capital provided by Willow, Priscilla opened her own retail shop selling general merchandise.

Priscilla is now able to support herself and take care of her children. She is able to sleep again and is focusing on maintaining a positive and healthy lifestyle. Her life is stable for the first time in a long time. Priscilla commented that with Willow’s help she learned that even though she came back to nothing, she is somebody—she is important.

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