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MAGDALENE & THISTLE FARMS - A Way Out

www.thistlefarms.org
by

Janet Richardson

on 28 April 2013

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Transcript of MAGDALENE & THISTLE FARMS - A Way Out

A Way Out Magdalene & Thistle Farms A WAY OUT WHY A HOW TO HELP Magdalene & Thistle Farms JOBS THE PROGRAM a way out MAGDALENE THISTLE FARMS & Video Stories Thistle Farms was created in 2001
as a social enterprise to provide employment for residents and
graduates of Magdalene. While working at Thistle Farms the women learn valuable skills in packaging, marketing, sales and manufacturing, administration--helping the women to move from poverty to independence. For many women caught up in the cycle of Magdalene is a two-year private residential rehab program
for women with a criminal history
of prostitution and addiction. In its sixteen year history, Magdalene has had more than 150 graduates, about 72% of whom were clean two and a half years after entering the program. Thistles grow in the streets and alleys where the women of Magdalene walked. Considered
a weed, they have a deep root that can shoot through thick concrete and survive drought.
In spite of the prickly appearance of a thistle, its royal soft purple center makes it a mysterious and gorgeous flower. Thistle Farms products are available in over 200 stores in Tennessee and across the country. The products are sold at specialty stores, online, at special events, and at Whole Foods in Nashville. 100% of the proceeds benefit the women of Magdalene and Thistle Farms. Thistle Farm got its name because the thistle flower
is the women's emblem,
and they use it with products they create. Order Thistle Farms products online
Host a party and sell Thistle Farms products
Volunteer at Thistle Farms & Magdalene
Invite a Thistle Farmer to speak to your group prostitution for women on the streets. provide Magdalene & Thistle Farms But in Nashville, Tennessee, there seems to be no way out. a way out Magdalene was founded in 1997 by Becca Stevens, an Episcopal priest who grew up in Nashville and had been sexually abused as a child. and the priest with a big heart Women of Magdalene At Magdalene, women receive two years of free housing, therapy, medical care, education and employment -- everything they need to prepare them for the transition back into a community. The Magdalene program requires that participants begin working after four
months in recovery. Many find this employment with Thistle Farms, an affiliated business that helps fund the program. sprouts up By hand the women create natural body care products that are as good for the body as they are for the earth. Magdalene receives no government funding.
Instead, they rely on
private grants, individual
donations, and the sales of Thistle Farms products. Magdalene and Thistle Farms stand as a witness to the truth that
love is more powerful than all the forces that drive women to the streets. The Women of Magdelene Thistle that make a difference About the Magdalene Program After four months, the women find work, return to school and/or enter Magdalene’s job training program at Thistle Farms, a social enterprise. Magdalene also offers a matched savings program to help residents prepare for economic independence upon graduation. Women who remain in recovery two years post-graduation are eligible for a new home buying program administered by two local congregations and Magdalene. Magdalene furnishes housing for 30 residents and graduates and provides outreach services to women still living on the streets. New residents are given a key and are offered the necessary resources to maintain recovery, heal from childhood wounds, become physically healthy and find employment. Magdalene’s programs are grounded in its 24 spiritual principles that advocate living gracefully in community with one another. Residents, graduates, staff and volunteers share daily tasks, offer hospitality, build on each other’s strengths, and provide compassionate, disciplined support. Magdalene was founded not only to help a subculture of women, but also to help transform the culture itself. They proudly stand in solidarity with women who are recovering from abuse, trafficking, addiction, and life on the streets, and who have paid dearly for a culture that continues to buy and sell women. Thistle Farms is housed in an 11,000 square feet sales and manufacturing facility. Thistle Farms is committed to growing in order to employ more women, and have greater opportunities to share their products and stories of healing on a larger scale. Thistle Farms wants people
to see their organization as a humble but powerful business that is synonymous with women’s freedom.
At Magdalene and Thistle Farms, they believe freedom begins with healing, and that love is the strongest force for change in the world. At Thistle Farms, the residents
of Magdalene participate in therapeutic workshops where they learn to make bath and body oils, candles, and paper. The paper is made from thistle plants that the women collect on roadsides and fields, and every product that Thistle Farm produces is sold wrapped in it. Video Stories of Magdalene & Thistle Farms Shelia's Story Becca Stevens and the Women of Magdalene & Thistle Farms About Magdalene (turn down prezi sound/music for video sound only) All women are entitled to unconditional respect for their intrinsic dignity and value. Over 85% of prostitutes are victims of childhood sexual molestation and incest. Greater than 50% of prostitutes are/were runaway or “throwaway” youth. Prostitution is primarily an economic choice of last resort for women who come from poverty and have little education, skills and options. Prostitutes risk violence with every trick, and are 9 times more likely to be murdered than the average working woman. Prostitution is as much a sociological issue related to cultural perceptions of women as second class citizens, as it is a criminal, legal, or nuisance issue. DID YOU KNOW? Information reported by MMP.Org
Helping Women out of Domestic Violence & Prostitution DID YOU
KNOW? The average age of entry into prostitution is between 12-14. The vast majority of prostitutes are childhood victims of some combination of emotional, sexual and physical violence. Children of prostitutes usually become/are victims themselves. NY Times, On the Ground F.A.C.T. Alliance MMP.Org - Helping Women out of Domestic Violence and Prostitution A cycle of violence and neglect can be broken, but it is difficult to get out of prostitution on one’s own; longer-term interventions by effective organizations have been proven to work.
Most prostitutes
make survival-based decisions, and would not be prostitutes if they had viable options. SOMETHING
TO
THINK
ABOUT Reported by MMP.Org - Helping Women out
of Domestic Violence & Prostitution Thistle A prostitute’s history of victimization and trauma sets her up for a psychological belief that she deserves no better, and has no other options. Society as a whole stigmatizes prostitutes as criminals, as opposed to victims. Prostitution is an extension of sexual abuse, for the vast majority. No little girl wants to be a prostitute when she grows up. SOMETHING
TO
THINK
ABOUT F.A.C.T. Alliance MMP.Org - Helping Women out of Domestic
Violence & Prostitution MYTH: Many believe women choose prostitution because they see it as an easy way to make money. Many women on the street today are the children we failed to protect yesterday. MMP. Org - Helping Women out of
Domestic Violence and Prostitution MMP.Org - Helping Women out of
Domestic Violence and Prostitution HEAR THEM SPEAK THEIR TRUTH www.thistlefarms.org Rev. Becca Stevens Something
To
Think
About GET INVOLVED Thistles
Full transcript