During the fall of 2014, The Covering House opened their long-term therapeutic home. The opening of this facility was significant for many reasons. This facility is for girls, between the ages of 13-17 years old, that have experienced sexual trafficking or exploitation in the U.S. This home is the first in the state of Missouri, third in the Midwest and 38th in the U.S. solely for girls under the age of 18 years old that have experienced this trauma.
Our long-term therapeutic home opened its doors on September 12, 2014. But we do things a little differently. Our girls are always learning, always growing, and always on-the-go. We want to help girls reclaim part of their childhood, so we go on weekly outings, family vacations, build incredible blanket forts and, most of all, we laugh.
Our program, written by a social worker who is also a survivor of sex trafficking, is divided into two phases. The first phase explores the meaning of safety and self-care as well as feelings and fear identification. The second phase focuses on developing self-awareness and efficacy as well as establishing appropriate boundaries and connection within relationships.
For students who have experienced trauma, a traditional school setting is not always conducive to learning. Academics will be part of the holistic restorative program and will work in conjunction with therapeutic counseling services and life skills classes.
Individual Counseling will be offered by clinically licensed counselors utilizing our Holistic Safety Program therapeutic model which incorporates Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Relational Cultural Theory, and Seeking Safety. Each client in The Covering House program will receive an individualized treatment plan developed by her counselor and treatment team.
A collection of experiential classes will be an essential part of daily living for the girls. Research indicates that many individuals exiting trafficking suffer from malnutrition and eating disorder either during or as a result of trauma. Therefore, nutrition education, culinary skills, and gardening will be a core class. Additional experiential classes will include financial stability, wellness, rights and responsibilities as an adult, photography, drama, Bible study and others.