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The Golden Girls of Hope

December 26, 2017 · 

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The Golden Girls of Hope
Francisco B. Bermido, Jr.

They were at first the terrible four. Only 14- and 16 year-olds, the four girls were rescued from traffickers by the municipal social worker and local police and brought to the Preda home for girls for recovery. They were caught in a house of prostitution and exploitation where they were trafficked by a pimp, lured with promises of money, drugs, drinks and boyfriends. There they were sexually abused.

Instead of being happy at being “rescued,” safe and protected at the Preda home for abused girls, they wanted to return to the trafficker. They were brainwashed into the world of vice and were denying any wrongdoing and were craving to escape and return to that life. They believed that the trafficker was giving them a happy life of pleasure and good times.

So what a challenge it was for the Preda social workers and therapists to persuade them otherwise when everyday they planned to leave the Preda home for girls which they could easily do since it is not a walled or fenced detention center. It is an open home in a natural location of peace and tranquility. It prides itself on teaching the victims to make a human choice based on reason, knowledge of right and wrong and using their free will to choose a better life for themselves.

It took months of counseling, affirmation, support and emotional expression therapy and the support of their positive helpful parents for them to gain high self-esteem, knowledge of their dignity and human rights and change their perception of themselves and of their future and relate with their parents.

They reached that very important turning point of having a profound change of heart and mind to see the truth, reject the past and to welcome the positive hopeful life of dignity and self-respect and respect for others.

They recovered, turned positive and rejected the former life of vice. Some will testify against the human trafficker who is detained and charged. All of us at the Preda Home for Girls are very pleased that they have reached this stage of growth and enlightenment. They will succeed and Preda will continue financial help for their education. The once terrible four are now the golden girls of hope and are recently reintegrated with their families and have a bright hopeful future. That is success. Who says it can’t be done?

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