GEMS - Girls Educational and Mentoring Services, Inc.

Award Recipients - 2001

Rachel Lloyd, Founder

Rachel Lloyd created Girls Educational and Mentoring Services (GEMS) “to educated, support and empower young women who are at a risk of sexual exploitation, abuse and violence” including sexual assault, rape and prostitution.  GEMS seeks to empower young women to achieve spiritual, emotional and physical well-being and educational and vocational goals.  Through counseling, referrals to services and educational opportunities, young women who have been or might be sexually exploited find opportunities to improve their lives.  
GEMS’s population is young women ages 13 to 21 living in correctional facilities, group homes and homeless shelters throughout the city.  GEMS conducts educational workshops that provide an opportunity to share experiences.  Informational sessions explore how the sex industry lures and exploits young women and the media’s role in perpuating myths about women.  Other workshops discuss sexually transmitted diseases, the effects of sexual abuse, relationship abuse and codependency.  GEMS also provides on-going case management to 70 incarcerated young women.  Services include counseling, family liaison, home and prison visits, court and parole advocacy and care packages.  Upon release, the young women receive orientation, counseling, and referrals.  In 2000, GEMS and others held public hearings on sexual exploitation of young people and the problem of prostituted and trafficked children.

© 2008–2014 Union Square Awards

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