The Rochester Central School District has partnered with nonprofit organization, the Creativity Shell to offer FREE sewing/textile arts workshops for students at School #53.
The Creativity Shell is a local nonprofit organization on a mission to use creative trades to educate and inspire the next generation of makers. The organization teaches sewing/textile arts classes to students in their private studio in Webster, public libraries, schools as well as shelters that rescue children from homelessness and human trafficking. Sewing/textile arts classes are designed to educate and inspire children by teaching them essential life and practical skills.
Sewing classes offered at School #52 is part of a public campaign launched by the Creativity Shell called the Human Trafficking Prevention Program or HTPP://.
Through feedback and conversations from student survivors in Creativity Shell programs at local shelters in Houston, the Creativity Shell has learned that at-risk and underserved children are easy prey for human traffickers. The promise of love, money, fame and a way out of their current life in often used by traffickers to lure and groom victims and traffickers are also lurking around in neighborhoods where children must walk to and from school as a way to get to know the children and groom them appropriately. Many of the young trafficking survivors in Creativity Shell programs were lured and groomed away from their homes and were sex trafficked by people they though they knew, loved and trusted.
Also, according to an article written by Marketwatch.com on July 28, 2019 about accused human trafficker Jeffrey Epstein, “The sexual-assault victimization rate among those from households making less than $7,500 is 12 times that of those making more than $75,000.” The article also added that “many of Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged underage victims were “particularly vulnerable to exploitation – and research on sex-trafficking survivors bears out their claim.”
For these reasons, the Creativity Shell feels that it is essential to launch the HTPP:// at low income schools such as School #53 in Rochester. The idea of the HTPP:// is to reach out to elementary school students in an effort to teach them practical and fundamental skills before their weaknesses are exploited by human traffickers. By learning life and job readiness skills in Creativity Shell programs, students will grow up with skills such as sewing, cooking, money management, delayed gratification, self-confidence, self-esteem and more.
Classes at School #53 will be offered after school and will be FREE of charge to students. The Creativity Shell is hoping to inspire the students enough so that when they are approached by traffickers, they will not be easily swayed.
This program is funded through private donations and from funds raised by the Creativity Shell in their Webster Studio located at 807 Ridge Road #E, Webster, NY 14580.