Bon Secours St. Francis Health System and Jasmine Road announced today the addition of a second safe house to expand what is already the first residential restoration program for human trafficking victims in South Carolina.

The new site is being funded through grant money from Bon Secours along with generous donations from North Hills Community Church, NewSpring Church, Grace Church and Fellowship Greenville.

“This is an exciting time for us in Catholic Healthcare. I have always said we plant the seed and the Holy Spirit grows the vine. This is a perfect example of how the faith based worship community has united and joined our faith based healing ministry. We are very excited and couldn’t ask for better partners. Together, God’s people are putting their time, treasure and talent into making this world a better place for God’s people,” said Dr. Alex Garvey, Senior Vice President of Mission at Bon Secours.

The extra space provided by the new site will allow Jasmine Road to provide two years of rent-free housing to 14 additional women. During that time, the group works with victims to address recovery from trauma and addiction as well as provide the tools to help women thrive on a new road to the future. Bon Secours will also continue to provide comprehensive medical and behavioral health care to all the residents to support their recovery and reintegration. 

“I am so grateful to Bon Secours, Grace Church and other major church partners that have mobilized to make this much needed second house a reality. This collaborative partnership sends the message to survivors that you belong to a new community that sees you and cares about restoring your dignity, worth and value.  We look forward to continuing to work diligently in partnership with our community to heal, empower and employ survivors of trafficking, prostitution and addiction,” said Beth Messick, Executive Director of Jasmine Road.

The new Jasmine Road site will have two separate buildings. One will be a designated work space, where women can learn job skills to help restore their independence. The second building will be traditionally laid out as a living space, including two independent living quarters where women will hopefully be able to reunite with their children, as a final step before their reintegration back into society.

Earlier this month, South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson announced new initiatives to address the issue of human trafficking in 2020, including more collaboration with the faith community and protecting survivors from re-victimization.

“We’re so blessed to already have great partners across our Upstate community working together in this way, and I believe this continued type of collaboration is what it’s going to take to truly tackle such an egregious crime,” said Garvey.