Human Trafficking Victims Recovery Program Eden House Launches Social Enterprise, Teaches Job Skills
NEW ORLEANS – Eden House announced the official launch of its social enterprise, Especially Eden, which offers socially conscious gift baskets for individuals and businesses looking to give an impactful gift to family, friends, visitors and colleagues.
The primary objective of the new enterprise is to provide the residents of Eden House the opportunity to gain marketable skills, job training and work experience to move toward financial independence and economic self-sufficiency.
Founded in 2011, Eden House is the only recovery home for adult female victims of human trafficking and commercial exploitation in the Greater New Orleans area. Since opening its doors, the confidentially located residence has housed more than 40 women, and has assisted more than 200 victims with resources and referrals. Its first resident graduated from the two-year program in April 2015; and this year, Eden House graduated two more women from the program.
“This is an exciting day for Eden House,” said Kara Van de Carr, founder and board president. “There are many facets to our rehabilitation program and a key challenge has been assisting graduates with job placement once they are ready to become independent. Many of the women who come to us were forced into prostitution as teenagers and thus have few marketable skills, lack successful job histories and often have complex legal histories that keep employers from hiring them. We’re now in a position to offer valuable job skills and work experience during their recovery, while also supporting women and minority artists/artisans in our community. It’s a win-win.”
Catherine, an Eden House resident, said, “As I have never worked before, I would like to gain job experience in the safety of Eden House.”
As part of their training at Especially Eden, residents will participate in skill building workshops related to the employment process and their work in the enterprise. They will be trained in computer literacy, website development, sales and marketing, customer service, accounting and assembly. Income generated by the enterprise will go towards residents’ salaries and eventually support Eden House operations.
There are three gift baskets available for purchase on the Eden House website: Healer ($35.00), Believer ($55.00) and Dreamer ($75.00-$100.00).
Especially Eden has partnered with 13 local businesses for basket items including Busters Homemade Pecan Candy, Cocktail & Sons, Jambalaya Girl, Louisiana Sisters, Native Polish, Nola Lip and Soap Company, Orleans Coffee, Gay Marie, Purple Monkey, Alexa Pulitzer, Emma Fick and Frances Rodriguez, along with bracelets assembled by Eden House residents.
With the 2017 holiday season approaching, Eden House encourages individuals and businesses to consider purchasing gift baskets that will positively impact women in the New Orleans community.