Symbol of Transformation and Empowerment
Launching Freedom Nest Cafe and Events Place
This year, Voice of the Free (VF) marked a crucial step in its mission to empower survivors of human trafficking with the launch of Freedom Nest Events Place and Cafe.
The cafe underscores the critical role of livelihood opportunities and skills training for survivors of legal age, who will eventually staff the social enterprise. It allows them to learn vital culinary and service industry skills, furthering their economic opportunities.
Contributing further to the transformative ambiance of Freedom Nest are the unique art pieces, hand-painted by our survivors, that adorn the cafe. Each piece tells a remarkable story of healing and recovery. It is available for purchase, enabling our patrons to contribute directly to the survivor's livelihood and carry a piece of their inspiring journey.
Amongst the survivors who witnessed the launch is Stella, who struggled all her life to break free from the chains of the past. She was just 14 years old when her mother sold her to different men. Her stepfather and employer sexually abused her. She was also sold to an 80-year-old man as a slave. When she could no longer endure the situation, she escaped and searched for refuge under her biological father, whom she never met.
Our launch event, "Ties of Hope: Strengthening Connections Against Human Trafficking," was a heartening display of our supporters' commitment, symbolized by colorful ribbons tied around the terrace railings. Ms. Katie Ford of the Freedom for All Foundation leads the ribbon-cutting during the opening of Freedom Nest.
"The initiative makes survivors productive, self-sustaining, and even more worthy of self-esteem and respect for their family and society. May the experience make each enjoy even more relationships that are loving, trustworthy, enriching, and affirming," Ms. Dang Cecilio from Beyond Beauty said during the launch event.
Thanks to all the partners, Macquarie Group Foundation, Thomson Reuters Foundation, Skoll Foundation, and Rotary Club of Squamish, for their unwavering support that continues transforming lives, giving survivors tools and opportunities to shape a hopeful future. We invite you to join this journey, whether dining in, hosting events or spreading the word about our mission. Every interaction enhances our impact, ensuring a sustainable, hopeful future for those we serve.
More than just a cafe, Freedom Nest stands as a beacon of hope, progress, and transformation in our fight against exploitation.