Sheila Ray’s Volunteering Experience
A House of Cherith Experience
“Once a month, I organize a small group of ladies to take dinner to the House of Cherith at the City of Refuge. We typically have dinner, do a simple craft, or other activities together and just fellowship.”
As the #1 city in the U.S. for sex trafficking, Atlanta is home to a staggering 12,400 transactions each month. House of Cherith (HOC) looks to provide a safe and refreshing place for victims of sex trafficking and exploitation. This program is designed to house women for up to 30 days, and then the program counselors work to place them in long term programs. One of the goals of House of Cherith is to make the women feel valued and loved. This goal is achieved through effective programming and with the help of champion volunteers like Sheila Ray.
“…One thing that is common is that the ladies have hope and security at HOC and are usually finding or renewing a relationship with Christ. It’s incredibly encouraging to watch God at work in the microcosm of HOC”
With the average pimp in the Atlanta area “handling” five girls and making approximately $33,000 a week, losing one girl is a big deal and can represent him losing up to 1/5th of his “property.” If a pimp is to maintain his street credit, he must go out and find the girl. As a result, we keep an armed security guard at House of Cherith 24/7. By removing the women from their toxic environment and by providing them with the essential sense of security, the women receive a glimpse of hope and the opportunity to gain a sense of spirituality.
“I leave humble, grateful and hopeful each time I have the privilege to fellowship with the residents at HOC.”
It doesn’t cost Sheila much to organize a few women and spend a few hours at House of Cherith. She does it out of the kindness of her heart and doesn’t expect anything in return. In doing so, Sheila plays a vital role in transforming one or several lives. Click here to get involved with City of Refuge.