Today would have been the 74th birthday of my grandmother, Ginny Meisenbach. In her honor, the Ginny Meisenbach Survivor Support Fund was established to care for survivors by assisting them directly with funds they need to help rebuild their lives. My grandmother Ginny believed these small but important grants to survivors could make a big difference in their recovery and future.
Children and youth survivors who have experienced the profound trauma of being bought and sold for sex need a range of services in order to successfully move forward and leave that life and pain behind. Small needs can often become a barrier to success. Because of this unique situation, the Ginny Meisenbach Survivor Support Fund was set up to provide victims with individual, specific aid. Survivors often need assistance with issues ranging from one month’s rent, childcare, legal advocacy, medical care, job training, counseling, or food and clothing assistance.
Because of my Grandma’s heart to help survivors in this way and your financial support, StolenYouth has been able to meet many of these important needs. Recently, StolenYouth was able to grant a survivor with $1,000 to help her cleaning business with startup costs, including new cleaning and office supplies, a website, the hire of two employees, and more. In a letter to StolenYouth she wrote, “I cannot thank you enough. Because of you, I was able to accomplish all of this. Because of your generosity, I was able to learn, build and grow my small cleaning business.”
Thanks to your generous financial support, we have been able to provide countless small grants to survivors. Most recently, StolenYouth has been able to give:
· $300, $500, and $672 to separate individuals for rental assistance
· $1,500 for legal assistance
· $1,500 towards tuition at the Northwest Academy for the Healing Arts
· $2,000 towards tuition at the Seattle School of Theology and Psychology
I am incredibly grateful to all of you and to the founders of Stolen Youth for creating this fund in memory of my Grandma Ginny. Her compassionate heart is able to live on through this fund. She felt so drawn to these young people, and longed for a better life for them. While her passing is still incredibly painful to me, it is beautiful for me to be even a small part of this legacy and watch how even in her passing she is impacting so many vulnerable children and youth with her love.
As I pause to reflect on my grandmother’s legacy today, on her birthday, I want to thank each of you for being so generous and for helping Stolen Youth provide such an important service through the Ginny Meisenbach Survivor Support Fund.
Student, Univesity of California, Berkeley, Class of 2021
Summer Intern at StolenYouth