Host Jeremy C. Park talks with Ben Turner, President and CEO of Viable Inc., who highlights the Tennessee-based charitable organization connecting survivors of abuse to meaningful employment and healthy, supportive community. Viable brings Tennessee social service agencies, business leaders and charitable donors and volunteers together, to bridge the gap for survivors – from vulnerability, exploitation and dependence on social programs – to healthy, productive, independent living in community. During the interview, Ben shares some of the history for launching Viable, talks about the importance of understanding the gaps and bridging them, discusses the power of collaboration and their unique model, shares stories of impact, and then mentions how businesses and the community can support their efforts.
For survivors of childhood abuse, who’ve aged out of foster care and now have no safety net. For survivors of human trafficking and domestic violence, who don’t have what they need to pursue a stable career after rescue and healing.
Without meaningful employment, 80% of trafficking victims will be re-trafficked. The majority of former foster youth will earn $0 income for months on end after they age out. 1 in 5 will be homeless. All are at exponentially greater risk to trafficking. 60% of child trafficking victims are current or former foster youth. 1 in 4 women are victims of intimate partner violence. Trauma is the hidden disease. All regions, socio-economics and ZIP codes in TN are affected.
Countless agencies are doing the vital work of rescue and recovery. Countless businesses have job openings that could be the next chapter for a survivor, after rescue and recovery. But there’s a gap between the two, and few survivors seem to be making it across the gap—until now.
- Imagine for a moment that you have been sold (trafficked), by your own family member(s). For years. You escaped, rescued by law enforcement or finding your own way to help. Each day, you’ve managed to pick yourself up off the floor and you’re choosing to live another day. Then another day. For two years, you’ve been in an aftercare and recovery program – a safe place, under the incredible care of doctors, therapists and social workers. Now, you’re thinking about the next chapter of your life and you’re wondering, “What’s next? How will I support myself when I leave this program?”
• Viable is bringing TN social service agencies, business leaders and charitable donors and volunteers together, to bridge the gap for survivors – from vulnerability, exploitation and dependence on social programs – to healthy, productive, independent living in community. This is done through an innovative, first-of-its-kind approach to healing, professional development, and customized career placement with ongoing support.
Viable welcomes financial donations, volunteer engagement, and prayer support. Opportunities exist for employers, individuals, churches and other professional and community groups.