Sisters of the Streets is a survivor led organization founded by Jaimee Johnson, a survivor of domestic sex trafficking. The focus of S.O.S is to create a safe place for women, young and old, to be able to break free from the world of exploitation. We focus on the empowerment aspect of prevention and the uplifting and encouragement aspect of intervention. We aim to provide and act as a resource for women who would like to begin a new chapter outside of this life no matter how new or vetted they are to it. We know that in order to do this, it takes a strong community of others who understand and value the importance of moving away from this exploitative lifestyle.
S.O.S is an organization focused on growth. At the moment our main purpose is acting as direct advocates for women and young girls as well as being a referral resource to get the ladies the assistance that best suits them and their situation. We also are committed to raising awareness on the realities of domestic trafficking among the community and helping society realize this is EVERYONE'S issue.
Our main focus is to not only to help the exploited realize they can GET OUT but support them in their journey of STAYING OUT.
Among many community collaborations, S.O.S also takes pride in doing things that help them stand out as an organization as well. One of those things being “The Purse Project” This is a street outreach that is held by S.O.S once a month in different areas of Southern California. We go out onto the streets well known for exploitation in San Diego, Orange County, Riverside County and L.A. County to bring donated purses filled with hygiene and makeup items for the women currently being exploited on the streets. We offer conversation, free brand-new items, gift cards and resources if requested. We strongly believe in meeting the women where they are located and build a relationship with them where there instead of expecting them to up and leave a life they are so accustomed too.
Another unique way S.O.S gets into the community is through social media. We have created a decent platform that we are continuing to build and hope reaches massive amounts of people eventually to raise awareness. January is National Human Trafficking Awareness month and in honor of that, we do a special social media campaign called #MYVOICEMATTERS. We invite everyone - survivors or not - to take a photo and add one of the following hashtags : #myvoicematters #realmendontbuysex #endingexploitation #stopthedemand and then keep it as your profile picture for the entire month of January to honor those currently being exploited, those who will be in the future, and those who have been. We hope that this raises people's eyebrows to question what is human trafficking? Is it existent in my neighborhood? Are the ones I love at risk? Do I know someone being trafficked? We believe awareness is key and we hope to be the platform that makes people stand up and not turn the other cheek.
S.O.S offers a unique perspective being survivor led and ran. Being able to know where the gaps in the system are, being able to relate and recognize the signs when other may look past, and being able to understand and empathize with the process of exiting and healing from a learned experience stand point is critical in this movement.
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Our founder, Jaimee, would like to take a moment to acknowledge and give a fact that only 1-2% of those who become victims of trafficking get out successfully. She is humbled and continually striving to be a part of the solution because she knows how blessed and chosen she is to be one of those small percentages. Through multiple counts of rape, abuse, physiological coercion, criminal records, jail time, suicide attempts, drug addiction, homelessness, facing death through weapons and physical threats, and losing complete self worth and value, she had a purpose. Her purpose was to get out, stay out, stay on her healing journey, and create a voice for those who may not know they have one in those moments. To break stigmas and misconceptions on those exploited as well as those who do the exploiting. To make her mark on the world through outward focus and using her pain for passion. She is constantly thankful and gracious to be alive and thriving as well as helping to remind others of their value.
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If this is a topic that sits heavy on your heart, and you have always wondered how to get involved and do something about it and be an upstander vs. a bystander, please visit us at www.sistersofthestreets.org to find out how you can be a part of the solution.
- Jaimee Johnson, 2018
to follow Sisters of the Streets on Instagram and to learn more about the organization or ways you can get involved, click the button below!
also, be sure to get involved in the Sisters of the Street social media campaign. Take a picture repping any of the hashtags listed in the article above and put it as your profile picture for the entire month of January! The only way we can make a difference and to help those in need is to be aware and not be afraid to stand up, support, and help those in need!
Jaimee and I first met on Myspace (shows how old we are!) and though we have never met in person, I have always felt such a connection to her. For over a decade, I've watched Jaimee go through so many different points in her life but never once did I ever lose any respect or love for her. It only makes watching her blossom that much more beautiful. Jaimee, I am incredibly proud of you for all that you do, all that you have done, and all that you have overcome. You have always been a light in my life and I know you've always had it within you to be exactly who you are in this moment - beautiful, strong, resilient, powerful, and inspirational. I love you, I got your back for always, and I am so thankful I got to witness your evolution as human, woman, mother, and friend.
love & light,