- Statewide, with a focus on Montgomery and Prince George's County
Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $800,000)
Ayuda will provide legal services, behavioral health services, and case management services to immigrant survivors of human trafficking throughout Maryland. This project will focus heavily on Montgomery County and Prince George’s County, which are the most populous counties in Maryland with nearly two million residents in total and have the largest percentage of immigrants. Services will also be available to trafficking victims throughout the entire state of Maryland, which includes rural areas with little access to culturally specific services for trafficking victims. Funding will enable Ayuda to continue providing culturally and linguistically specific legal and social services to current and new clients who are trafficking victims, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, race, country-of-origin, or type of trafficking experienced. All services will be trauma-informed, victim-centered, survivor-informed, culturally competent, voluntary, and provided at no cost to clients. Through this project, victims will have access to legal and social services professionals with specialized expertise in the needs and challenges that immigrant victims of human trafficking face when recovering from the trauma of trafficking. During the three-year grant period, Ayuda will provide legal advice and counsel and/or long-term representation to 100 immigrant victims (including survivors and family members) of human trafficking in 200 legal matters such as consultations, T visas, U visas, Asylum and other related legal relief or benefits; provide comprehensive case management services to 36 immigrant victims; provide individualized behavioral health services to 45 trafficking victims; provide 30 support group sessions for victims; provide 33 training presentations or presentations on trafficking of foreign-born individuals to increase public awareness and aid in the identification and referral of victims; and collaborate with and conduct outreach to local service providers, task forces, and first responders to improve protocols and procedures for the identification and referral of immigrant victims of human trafficking.