HER HOPE: My name is Milena and I am 17 years old. There’s so much pressure from peers to be popular, to wear the best clothes, and to have perfect makeup. On top of this, there is a constant urge to do drugs and drink alcohol. But this isn’t all I deal with….
My father has sexually assaulted me, and I’m dealing with the fact that he has sold me for sex since I was 14. My story is like too many young girls in our city. Denver should be a safe city for young girls. We need a place where we can be safe…
I’ve been rescued from trafficking, but I’m 4 years behind in school, suffer from severe depression, and have no suitable place to live. I can’t go back to my family and I’m thankful to not be in a detention center. I’ve had to go from house to house seeking a safe and warm place to stay for the night. Every day I declare that things will get better and I hope to finally go back to school. I’m trying to do everything that I can to keep a job, but inside it’s too much to carry. The pain is deep and goes back for too many years. I constantly battle between wanting to be free, to be healed, but I struggle with the overwhelming force of shame and hopelessness.
I’m thankful I’ve found a mentor. Her name is Maria and she is the most positive person I have in my life. I trust her, and that is hard for me, but I need to – I need someone who will listen and understand what I have to deal with. So I tell her everything. It feels so good, but so scary. I hope to one day feel completely safe with someone. Maria is helping me to do that.
I am so thankful for Maria and I am constantly hoping for a safe place for girls like me to heal and find a new life.
I am very happy and very sad to take the next step. It is scary to go somewhere you haven’t been.
Quote from a girl in Avanti House:
“I’m thankful for this house and the staff and what you guys have done for me. I’m thankful for the Lord. I’m thankful that this is the first home that I haven’t run away from and have stayed at the longest. I’m on the right track now and it’s because of this place”..“