Before and After : Ellilta Women at Risk

Ellilta Women at Risk has been working to rescue, counsel, and support women coming out of the sex industry looking for a new way life.  Ellilta restores the dignity of these women and strive to bring about freedom and restoration to people and places that are marginalized, abused, and neglected. For more than two decades, hundreds of women have gone through the program and many of them have begun to work at Women at Risk to help more women find healing and safety.

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Original staff

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Current staff

Here is a story from one of these women…

Helen grew up with her family in Nazreth (Adama town). When she was a grade seven student she started relationship with a boy from her classmate and after they stayed in relationship for a year she got pregnant and Helen was very happy when she knew about it because her dream was to spend the rest of her life with the man she fell in love with. Then Helen told everything for her boyfriend but he responds he had nothing to do with the pregnancy she don’t not expect this could happen to her because she trusted him so much so Helen decided not to tell anyone about her pregnancy not even for her parents because she knew they are not able to support the coming baby. Then Helen thought that the only way she can survive is to drop out of school and start working by her own to make money. As Helen was searching for a job a friend of her informed her there is available job in a hotel so Helen decided to start working the next day.

Starting From that day, Helen started working as prostitute at the age of 19 but she was not happy by her life that she was isolated both from her family and the society. After working in the sex work for seven years one night Helen meets with counsellors from Ellilta women At risk in the night visit and they talked to her to come to the program if she want to change her life. Then Helen was very excited and willing to join the program so she was registered to start the program. Then she was accepted in the rehabilitation program and during her stay in Ellilta she was a very cleaver woman that can be a role model for others in prostitution.

Currently, Helen is working as a chef in Ellilta women At risk also she got married and a mother of 4 child. Helen claim that her world view has totally changed because of the teachings she took from Ellilta. Helen also learned the meaning of love, hope and happiness from the staff and she is able to reflect what she learned for others. Helen wants to say God bless you and thank you for those who were supporting her while she was in the program.

Due to the sensitive material in this content, we have changed the name of the woman.

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