Salvation Army safe house welcomes Royal visitor
published on 22 Oct 2020
Co-founders of The Anti-Slavery Collective, Her Royal Highness Princess Eugenie and Julia de Boinwille made time for a socially-distant visit to a Salvation Army safe house in the run up to Anti-Slavery Day, 18th October 2020.
Here, they met with survivors of modern slavery and staff members who shared their experiences. On hearing personal stories of exploitation experienced by residents, and the impact of the support provided by Salvation Army staff, both were moved by the courage of the survivors, many of whom had endured decades of abuse from traffickers and criminal gangs running forced labour operations.
Residents also presented HRH Princess Eugenie and Julia de Boinville with plant pots made for them by survivors using the art of Kintsugi as one of the many therapeutic activities which helped residents, particularly during recent challenges months of lockdown and uncertainty. This Japanese art repairs broken pottery by mending cracks with gold or silver lacquer, so that breakage and repair are displayed with pride rather than something to hide.
Head of Operations for Anti Trafficking and Modern Slavery at The Salvation Army, Emilie Martin, said:
“The visit gave our residents and staff a tremendous boost. Awareness and understanding are key to tackling modern slavery, so we are also delighted with the opportunity it provided to raise the profile of this important issue more widely.”
The safe house visited is one of a network of safe houses and outreach work run by The Salvation Army and its partners across England and Wales. Here, through a Government contract, slavery survivors are given access to a range of support to help with their recovery including counselling, medical help, legal advice, educational opportunities and support for finding employment and housing.
Staff and visitors wore Salvation Army #WeAreNotForSale face masks. These masks are the latest addition to the organisation’s #WeAreNotForSale campaign designed to spread awareness of modern slavery. The design features a barcode to symbolise how victims are treated objects that can be bought and sold. Masks can be bought for £5.99 via the organisation’s online shop: http://www.sps-shop.com/ with all proceeds going towards the charity’s Victim Care Fund which provides vital additional support to help survivors of slavery move on with their lives.