Behind each woman who rebuilds her life after being trafficked through Sanctum House’s two-year rehabilitation program is an entire network of people that can now also heal. Sanctum House helps women mend relationships with their family, find a path to success through education and job training, and ultimately, restore a woman’s sense of self-worth.
“By saving one woman from the trauma of human trafficking, we can stop the cycle of abuse for several generations. These are women who were once destitute and at the mercy of others. Now, they have repaired their lives and in turn are contributing back to their community in positive ways by volunteering, raising a family, holding down a job, and owning/renting their own home.”
One of Southeast Michigan’s only “healing sanctuaries” for victims of trafficking now finds itself at a crossroads. After leasing the over three-acre property in 2017, with the intention of expansion, that time has finally come.
Now, Sanctum House founder and president Edee Franklin is putting out a plea to donors to raise over $1 million by year’s end. The goal is to purchase the property, renovate, and expand the three existing buildings. The annual operating budget for Sanctum House is approximately $560,000 a year and the estimated renovation cost for the 2 additional buildings is $400,000. She and generous donors have already raised $510,000 towards securing ownership of the property.
Franklin said the organization is very fortunate to have the opportunity to purchase the 3.3-acre campus. If successful, it can triple the number of women in its program where they receive drug and alcohol rehabilitation as well as education, trauma informed therapy, physical health care, job training, life skills training, spiritual opportunities and legal support. There are just not enough comprehensive programming resources out there to help trafficking victims. While thousands of calls come into the National Human Trafficking Hotline, just as many cases are not reported as this is a very underreported crime.