In the News

Meet the Westchester County Task Force

The Westchester County Anti-Trafficking Task Force educates its members to address human trafficking and exploitation occurring in nail salons and massage parlors.  Nail salon workers are protected by a new bill of rights and can call 1-888-469-7365 for help or information.  Pictured here is IOFA's Co-Founder and Executive Director and Task Force Advisor,  Ali Boak with Task Force Co-Chairs Fred Green, Westchester County District Attorney's Office, Miriam Rocah, U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District, Karen Cheeks Lomax and Rebecca De Simone from My Sisters' Place.  Also pictured are Estelle Davis of the New York State Department of Labor, and Mary Caparas and Su Young Jung from New York Asian Women's Center.

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ChildRight New York commended by Governor Cuomo

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced new efforts to combat human trafficking and provide help to survivors as they reintegrate safely into their community. This crime affects more than 1,000 children in New York each year, and it is estimated that nearly 18,000 people are brought into the United States annually for the same purpose. The Governor also proclaimed January as Human Trafficking Awareness Month, and unveiled a new poster that lists possible trafficking red flags and a free, confidential hotline. Among the efforts highlighted, Office of Children and Family Services Commissioner Roberto Velez said, “The Office of Children and Family Services has been working for years to put a stop to trafficking, which robs children of the opportunity to live their lives free of abuse and neglect. A large number of trafficked individuals are children and youth, many of whom were a part of the child welfare system. For that reason, the Office of Children and Family Services has partnered with the International Organization for Adolescents through the ‘ChildRight: New York’ project to identify youth vulnerable to trafficking, and provide services and training sessions for child welfare professionals in six counties, in New York City, and on the St. Regis Mohawk Reservation. Our awareness and education efforts are growing each year to turn the tide on trafficking and give all of our children the bright futures they deserve.”

To read the full press release click here

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ChildRight New York partnership touted at Albany TEDx event

The partnership between IOFA and New York's Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) was in the spotlight on December 4 when IOFA Project Director Madeline Hannan spoke at TEDxAlbany, an independently organized TED Talk at the Overit Creative Agency. Madeline spoke about her experiences working in a group home in New York City and how it inspired her to get involved in the fight against child trafficking. IOFA works with OCFS on ChildRight New York, a long-term strategy to guide child welfare professionals in building an effective statewide response to child trafficking.

For more information and video of the conference, visit TedxAlbany here.  

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IOFA Founder honored at My Sisters’ Place Annual Fall Luncheon “ImpACT”

from New York Nonprofit Press

On October 30th, 2014 My Sisters' Place (MSP) hosted their Annual Fall Luncheon "ImpACT: Intimate Partner Violence and Sexual Assault on College Campuses".  With over 350 in attendance, "ImpACT", brought the crucial conversation of gender violence on college campuses to the forefront.  Co-chaired by Patricia Moores of Aon Corporation, Rita Stephanz of Clifford Chance US LLP, and Thomas Schwarz, President of SUNY Purchase College, the program included speakers Nancy Hogshead-Makar, Olympic Gold Medalist and Title IX and Sexual Assault Activist, and Jonathan Kalin, founder of Party with Consent.   

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Human Trafficking is OUR Problem

Human trafficking is not just an international issue, it is a local one. In 2013, IOFA launched the “Human Trafficking is OUR Problem” campaign, a campaign dedicated to ending modern day slavery domestically.

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IOFA launches ChildRight: New York trainings in Westchester County

ChildRight: New York

In January 2013, IOFA with the support of the New York State Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) launched ChildRight: New York in five pilot areas including the counties of Erie, Monroe, Onondaga, and Westchester as well as the five boroughs of New York City.

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IOFA Executive Director and President Contribute to State of the World’s Children Report 2011

IOFA was invited to contribute an article to the online Perspectives section for this year’s State of the World’s Children Report. The theme of this year’s report was “adolescence.” Executive Director, Shelby French, and IOFA Co-Founder and President, Alison Boak co-wrote - Navigating the Road to Adulthood: The experiences of parentless youth. The article focused on the challenges faced by young people as they age out of alternative care. A focus of IOFA’s new 3 year strategic plan is the Transitions Initiative: a comprehensive support and services program for young people leaving or aging out of institutions, orphanages, foster, and other forms of non-familial care. IOFA is honored to work with UNICEF on the State of the World’s Children Perspectives feature and is very excited about implementing the Transitions Initiative in the coming years.

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IOFA Releases the Building Child Welfare Response to Child Trafficking Handbook

The International Organization for Adolescents (IOFA) and the Center for the Human Rights of Children (CHRC)at Loyola University Chicago are excited to announce the publication of the Building Child Welfare Response to Child Trafficking Handbook. The handbook is a critical=piece of a project to mobilize child welfare agencies to address widespread and systemic gaps in efforts to combat the human rights abuses suffered by the thousands of children and youth throughout the United States who are trafficked for labor or sexual exploitation each year.

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IOFA Publishes its Research Report: Transitions Initiative Cambodia

IOFA determined last summer that youth still in orphanage care in and around Phnom Penh, Cambodia presented “risk factors” that suggested they would be vulnerable to exploitation, violence, drug use, and other dangerous trajectories upon their exit from care. This March, we returned to Cambodia to find youth and young adults who had already left orphanage care. We aimed to learn about their experiences and begin to understand general trajectories for care leavers, to determine whether they are indeed vulnerable, and if so, what kinds of services might support them.

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