Foster VC Kids Ready to Stop | Foster VC Kids
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What is the Ready Program?

Commercial sexual exploitation of children happens when an individual buys, trades or sells sexual acts with a person under the age of 18. The youth in our community are vulnerable to these predators, and We are READY to STOP child trafficking in Ventura County.

The READY Program stands for Respectfully, Empowering and Defining Yourself and is a program within Ventura County’s Children and Family Services Agency.  The READY Program provides support to social workers as they seek to identify and offer assistance to children and youth within the child welfare system who are experiencing commercial sexual exploitation or are at high risk of such.  The READY Program liaisons with stakeholder agencies, non-profits, law enforcement, and other partners to build a network of response to address child trafficking.

The READY to Stop Child Trafficking in Ventura County initiative brings the issue of child trafficking to the forefront by educating local residents, youth, educators, and leaders in our communities about the dangers, signs, and resources available to stop child trafficking in our local community.

“It’s so great to see people working on this problem. As a teen, no one knew I was being trafficked, including me. I hid all of it from everyone, or at least I thought I did. Maybe today, people would see what was really happening to me and be able to help.”
– Survivor

Frequently Asked Questions

Who are victims of child trafficking?

All children, from any culture and socioeconomic background are vulnerable to commercial sexual exploitation and child trafficking.

Who are perpetrators of child trafficking?

o Family members
o Significant others such as friends, boyfriends, or girlfriends
o Trusted adults
o Predators who prey on vulnerable youth

Where does child trafficking occur?

Many predators target victims near:
o Bus and train stations
o Malls
o Parks
o Social media websites such as Instagram, Facebook, gaming sites, dating sites
o False employment opportunities such as modeling or dancing

Who are at particular risk of being trafficked?

o Youth and unrestricted or unmonitored use of the internet and social media
o Youth with current or prior involvement in the child welfare or juvenile justice systems
o Youth with a prior history of sexual abuse
o Runaway and homeless youth
o Transgender youth
o Youth with mental, emotional, or physical disabilities

How does child trafficking victimization occur?

o Victims are typically hidden from plain sight (i.e. still attending school) and often go unnoticed
o Youth are commonly befriended and offered gifts and/or shelter in exchange for sex
o Manipulation tactics including false promises of a better life, money, fame, glamour
o Perpetrators often establish a loving relationship to gain trust and loyalty
o The child’s dependency, whether financial or emotional, is used against them to manipulate them into performing sexual acts for monetary gain
o Children are emotionally and/or physically threatened and abused to maintain obedience and deter any thoughts or attempts of escaping their trafficker

How can educators identify the signs of child trafficking?

o The child is homeless, has run away, or is involved in the child welfare or juvenile justice systems
o Frequently absent for no given reason
o Shows visible signs of physical and emotional abuse
o Frequently goes on “vacation”
o Shows signs of malnourishment and sleep deprivation
o Responses to questions come off well-rehearsed
o Boyfriend or girlfriend is visibly older
o Promiscuity and sexual references occur uncharacteristically

What resources are available to educate the public about child trafficking?

o Department of Homeland Security Blue Campaign
o National Human Trafficking Resource Center
o Shared Hope International
o The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
o Interface Children and Family Services
o Forever Found

How to report child trafficking?

o For immediate emergencies, call 9-1-1
o Ventura County Child and Elder Abuse Reporting Hotline: 805-654-3200
o National Human Trafficking Hotline: 888-373-7888

TO MAKE A REPORT
CONTACT OUR LOCAL HOTLINE

(805) 654-3200

COMMUNITY-BASED ORGANIZATIONS

Are you READY to volunteer to help youth?

The READY Program works closely in partnership with the following community-based organizations:

For additional information contact the READY Program for more information at 805-654-3469.

BECOME A RESOURCE FAMILY

Often times, children and youth who have escaped their trafficking situation are vulnerable to returning to their exploiter, for a variety of reasons; such as financial or substance abuse dependency, emotional attachment, or fear. 

These children and youth may need resource families who will welcome them into a safe and stable home to support them as they heal from the trauma of their trafficking situation.

Resource families provide our youth and children with encouragement, support, motivation, and most importantly love.

Are you interested in loving and supporting Ventura County’s most vulnerable youth? Learn more about how you can become a resource family by visiting http://fostervckids.org/become-a-fostering-parent/

REPORT

For immediate emergencies:

call 9-1-1

Ventura County Child and Elder Abuse Hotline:

805-654-3200

National Human Trafficking Hotline:

888-373-7888

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