Restoration Movement Symposium: SUCCESS!

1st and 2nd Year Graduate Art Therapy Students, along with Sue Wallingford, at the Transitions Symposium in Denver, September 29, 2012 (Photo by Erin Shannon)

What an incredible opportunity it was for representatives from NCAS-I to attend the Restoration Movement Symposium hosted by Transitions in Denver last weekend.  We learned about the urgency in bringing awareness to the issue of sex-trafficking, both here in Colorado and globally.  We learned that trauma-informed care is imperative when working toward rehabilitation and reintegration for survivors of sex-trafficking.  What’s more, we know that quality restoration care takes time, is worth doing well, and cannot be done alone.  Collaboration, a founding principle of NCAS-I, is key.

As we look to the future, we are very excited about the possibility of forging new partnerships with organizations in Cambodia, maintaining NCAS-I’s mission to actively engage with social justice organizations like Chab Dai, Transitions, and Polaris Project.

Moving forward, we find inspiration in James Pond’s words when asked, “How do you find hope with such difficult work?” The co-founder of Transitions responded, “It is the small successes that matter – when you actually have a girl reintegrate back into society without being re-trafficked, re-exploited or voluntarily engaging in prostitution.”  Follow James and Athena Pond and The Restoration Movement here!

Thank you to Sgt. Daniel Steele, Tovah Means, Stacia Freeman, Katherine Chon, Helen Sworn, and James and Athena Pond!

P.S. We walked away from the Symposium with a wealth of knowledge and look forward to sharing more with you as we continue our journey!  Thank you all for your support and please stay tuned!

Inspiration: Helen Sworn & Chab Dai (VIDEO)

Students and faculty of the Naropa Community Art Studio-International are so excited for the opportunity to attend “Restoring the Lives of Survivors,” a Symposium sponsored by Transitions.  At an all-day event tomorrow in Greenwood Village, CO, we will have the opportunity to learn from experts in the field of human trafficking, aftercare, and restoration, covering such issues as shelters, safe homes, aftercare programs, and other responses to serving victims of the sex trafficking industry.

The video below features Helen Sworn, Director of Chab Dai and a speaker at the Transitions’ Symposium tomorrow.  It highlights the organization’s collaborative way of working, inspiring our own mission, rooted in collaboration and a belief in the innate wisdom, creativity, and interdependence of all.  Check it out!

“Ethos of Collaboration,” by Chab Dai

Become Part of The Restoration Movement!

It’s not too late to sign up for “Restoring The Lives of Survivors Symposium” presented by Transitions!  And it’s easy…simply follow this link!

A few weeks ago we posted about the event, which you can read about HERE.  The symposium will feature a number of speakers and experts in the field of human trafficking, aftercare, and restoration, covering such issues as shelters, safe homes, aftercare programs, and other responses to serving victims of the sex trafficking industry.

General Information:
8:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Greenwood Community Church
5600 E. Belleview Avenue
Greenwood Village, CO 80111

***The Naropa Community Art Studio-International will be represented by some of its 2nd year Art Therapy students along with Sue Wallingford.  We hope to see you there!  

All information gathered from… P.S. Did you now Transitions has a really informative blog?  Check it here!

Photo Credit:  The Naropa Community Art Studio-International, Cambodia, 2012

Symposium Presented by Transitions: Restoring the Lives of Survivors

A symposium on shelters, safe homes, aftercare programs,
and other responses to serving victims of the sex trafficking industry, presented by Transitions on September 29, 2012 in Greenwood Village, CO.  The symposium will specifically cover what key issues are at stake and what is needed to provide successful aftercare and restoration to the survivors of sex trafficking.

Featured speakers and experts in the field of human trafficking, aftercare, and restoration will include:  Tovah Means, who serves on Transitions’ Advisory board (, Stacia Freeman, Executive Director of Abolition International and director of Abolition International Trafficking Shelter Association (, Katherine Chon, Co-Founder and Director Emeritus of Polaris Project in Washington, D.C. (, Helen Sworn, Founder and International Director of Chab Dai (, and James Pond, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Transitions (

Topics will include:  “Trauma Informed Care for Sex Trafficking Survivors,” “The State of Shelters, Accountability, and the Trafficking Shelter Association,” “Strategic Planning for Shelters, Safe Homes, and Aftercare,” “What Excellence Looks Like,” “How Do We Know We Are Effective?,” “Faith in Practice.”

Are you wondering if you should attend?  This symposium is intended for: Those who currently provide domestic or international aftercare; Those interested in creating an aftercare facility or program; Those who desire to work in the aftercare arena; Those concerned about the critical need for successful restoration.



If you have any questions about the Symposium, please contact Pam Harvey at

***Transitions is an organization that provides holistic and innovative long-term aftercare for adolescent girls who have been rescued from sex trafficking.  The Naropa Community Art Studio – International (NCAS-I) formed a partnership with Transitions in 2011 and traveled to Cambodia to work with the organization in May of 2012.  The NCAS-I looks forward to a continued partnership with Transitions and fully supports their mission.  

All information gathered from

Be A Voice. Shine A Light.

In three days the NCAS-I will begin its journey to Cambodia.  Our main partnership with Transitions Global will give us the opportunity to help in supporting and empowering survivors of sex trafficking in a place where the trafficking industry is so prevalent.  We also hope to be a voice for survivors and shine a light on the trafficking industry as a way to combat human trafficking of the future.  Below are statistics from UN.GIFT (United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking) regarding Human Trafficking worldwide.  They are staggering.

Human Trafficking Statistics from UN.GIFT

  • 161 countries are involved in or affected by human trafficking in some way
  • Approximately 2.5 million people are forced into labor as a result of human trafficking
  • 1.2 million children are trafficked each year
  • 43% of human trafficking victims – over 1 million – are forced into commercial sexual exploitation, AND 98% of these victims are women and girls
We have posted a number of times about Patricia McCormick’s new book, ‘Never Fall Down,’ Arn Chorn Pond’s story of brutality and survival in Cambodia.  McCormick also published a book in 2006 called, ‘Sold,’ a harrowing account of sexual slavery.  This fall filmmaker Jane Charles will begin filming a moving based on the book ‘Sold.’  Expected to release in the spring of 2013, Charles has released this 60 second preview to build momentum for the project, be a voice and shine a light:

Charles’ Inspiration:  “I feel like these are all our children, whether Cambodia, India, Russia they are all our children we cannot turn a blind eye to it anymore we have to create change,” Charles said.  “These girls could be my daughter, they could be your daughter or they could have been one of us.”

We hope the information provided here on our blog is educational.  Thank you for following us!  Stay with us as we journey to Cambodia – your support is so appreciated!

(Statistics from:

(Original 60 second preview and Charles’ quote from:

Dream Catchers: My Dream Is To…

“My dream is to open my own restaurant someday.”  “I hope to own a small hotel in the future.”  “I dream of marrying a good man, owning a home and having children.”  “Someday I would like to ride my very own motorbike.”  “I would like to own a home so my mother can live with me and not have to work collecting recycling anymore.”  “I would like to have a good job, so I can have an income for food and support my own family.”  “I dream of having a good job to save enough money to build a house where my sister and I could live together.”  “I dream of attending a university after high school to become a nurse or social worker.” – From the girls at Transitions, an organization that shelters and rehabilitates girls survivors of the sex trafficking industry

Art Activity:  Dream Catcher

~Capturing both your dreams and creativity~

A Dream Catcher by Voyle Graham

A Dream Catcher by Voyle Graham, from

That Artist Woman offers thorough step-by-step instructions on how to make a dream catcher in a blog post titled, “How to Make a Dreamcatcher” at the link below.  Check it out!

Pinterest has some beautiful and inspiring images of dream catchers, too!  Take a look here:

Remember these Dream Flags from the Matchbox Art Auction?  They offered a great way for everyone at the event to send wishes to the children and families in Cambodia at Transitions, Raggamuffin Project, and Anjali House!  NCAS-I will be delivering them soon.

(Quotes from

Art Activity: Making Worry Dolls

“The young artist told me with great confidence that she didn’t need to tell the worry doll her worries anymore, because the doll just knows them now.”
— Marlene von Friederichs-Fitzwater

Traditional Guatemalan Worry Doll

Handmade Worry Doll Created in Art Therapy Session

Traditional worry dolls are made in Guatemala and are thought to date back to Mayan times.  They are also sometimes referred to as trouble dolls.  Worry dolls or trouble dolls are believed to have the power to hold our worries.  For example, before bedtime, we might confide our worries in the worry doll, tuck him or her under our pillow, and get a goodnight’s rest as the doll holds all of our worries.  Even more, a worry doll can be a friend with whom we can share emotional pain.

What about worry dolls and art therapy?  The UC Davis Cancer Center suggests in art therapy sessions that children make worry dolls in the shape of their fears.  The doll is then slipped under each child’s pillow in the middle of the night, instilling in each child the belief that the source of worry is gone.  This activity of creating and using a worry doll is great because it combines so many things:  creative expression, acknowledgment of worries, friendship, trust, letting go of worries, and the therapeutic process.

As we mentioned in a previous post, the NCAS-I will be making worry dolls with the girls at Transitions and a local orphanage in Cambodia.

(Quote and 2nd image from:; other information and 1st image from:                              

Meet Molika

Black, White, and Pink– The perfect color combination according to Molika!

Molika is one of many rescued girls at Transitions the NCAS-I looks forward to meeting in Cambodia.  Molika also loves karaoke with her friends, would love to develop her skills in art, dreams of raising a family, and aspires to become a social worker and help girls like her.  Read on below:

Molika was rescued and began her journey of restoration at the Transitions Dream Home in August of 2010.

Molika likes the taste of salty fish and vegetables. She believes black, white and pink to be perfect combination of colors, and loves her time with friends — especially singing karaoke!

Molika thinks traveling to the USA would be a great experience, seeing tall buildings and exploring new places. If she had the money to spend she would enjoy shopping for a handbag and a cute pair of little heels.

Molika enjoys art and would love to develop skills in this area. Her dreams include raising a family of her own and becoming a social worker so she can help other rescued girls. Molika studies rigorously to help these dreams come true.

We can’t wait to meet you, Molika! 

(Image and information from

Dream On for Mom!

Help restore and empower a young girl in honor of MOM this Mother’s Day!  Check out Transitions ‘Dream On for Mom’ gift below…

Time to plan your Mother’s Day gifts and Transitions has the perfect one! Honor your Mom with a sponsorship of a girl rebuilding her life. The Mom in your world will receive a beautiful package from Transitions and receive a gift of immeasurable value!

Follow this link to sponsor a girl through Project EveryGirl for as little as $25/month!

(All information and image from

A Better Way of Life

One of the 3rd year art therapy students shared this quote in her final oral presentation this week at Naropa University:

“The status of victim can never constitute a way of life.” – Patricia Hill Collins

The NCAS-I could not agree more, which is why we have partnered with Transitions to help rehabilitate and reintegrate girls who have been sex trafficked in Cambodia.  We truly believe these girls should have the opportunity to be survivors and world changers, not victims.

A moving short film by Transitions…