“The beehive, the colony, the community of bees is a great method for the values that we uphold as a community — industry, cooperation, putting the good of the whole ahead of your own selfish needs, working together, healing together,” said Eyleen Farmer, president of Thistle & Bee Memphis.
The non-profit program works to restore dignity to woman trapped in the nightmare of sex trafficking by building a business that is owned and operated by survivors.
And by purchasing the products, handcrafted by survivors, you are participating in the mission to offer survivors more than a life raft.
“In addition to providing meaningful, dignified work, at a livable wage. Thistle & Bee also provides wraparound services to help them deal with all the stresses in their lives. We also provide a clinical component to our program from trauma counseling to twelve step recovery participation to various types of support —everything from helping them get new glasses or dental care to health care, financial support to legal support — all of those things that are required to thrive in a very complicated world. We try to address their barriers to success,” said Farmer.
Currently, there are five women in the program, but the goal is to increase it to 40. One survivor is learning a lesson in nature and life.
“You definitely have to be calm and willing. Open-minded, resourceful,” said the survivor.
The program knows that these women have had their lives controlled by everything from drugs to physical and emotional abuse and haven’t had time to dream — until now.