Not just a third-world issue
StolenYouth fights the human rights issue of our time—child sex trafficking—in its own backyard. We helped the Seattle-based nonprofit rethink its marketing strategy to boost awareness, engagement, and efficiency.
Sex trafficking and child prostitution aren’t just third-world issues. Boys and girls across the United States are forced into the sex trade every day—yet their plight is rarely acknowledged.
StolenYouth is doing its part to raise funds and awareness for sexually exploited youth in Seattle. In less than three years, the nonprofit has raised more than $1.5M to support the work of four local organizations: YouthCare, the Center for Children & Youth Justice, Businesses Ending Slavery & Trafficking, and Organization for Prostitution Survivors. Together, they’re fighting child trafficking and providing victimized youth with much-needed comprehensive services.
As part of our Slalom’s Philanthropy Fellow program, consultant Mary Krogermeier worked with StolenYouth to provide strategy, marketing, and operations recommendations, pro bono. Her work is helping the nonprofit reach new levels of awareness and donor engagement and improve operations and efficiency.*
*Since this article was originally published, Mary Krogermeier has left Slalom.
From Seattle to India, and back again
StolenYouth started with a book. A few years ago, a group of friends in Seattle read Sold. The women were deeply moved by the gruesome account of human trafficking in India and they wanted to help. After traveling to India to visit the NGOs fighting child sex trafficking, the friends still wanted to do more. First, they invested in the production of SOLD—a film adaptation of the powerful novel.
Then they discovered a disturbing reality in their own backyards: Seattle has one of the worst records of child prostitution in the United States. That discovery led to StolenYouth. The nonprofit works tirelessly to raise awareness and fund the efforts of four local organizations.
"I ask you to join with us to change the lives of these innocent children, these victims of our local sex trade. They did not choose this life, they were forced into it—and together we can offer them a way out."
Sold puts a face to child sex trafficking.
In Patricia McCormick’s gripping novel, 13-year-old Lakshmi is forced to leave home and support her family. Under the guise of a maid job in the city, young Lakshmi is sold into prostitution—abruptly jolting her from her family’s hut in Nepal to a “Happiness House” in India. Though Sold is ultimately a tale of triumph and survival, it presents a stark picture of the nightmarish reality of child prostitutes around the world.
The feature-film adaptation, SOLD, illustrates the brutality of child trafficking. Its creators and cast—including executive producer Emma Thompson and actors Gillian Anderson and David Arquette—hope that the film will inspire a global movement to address this crime.
Philanthropy Fellow at work
StolenYouth wanted to refine its operations to better serve the victimized youth of Seattle. To do so, it engaged the help of our Philanthropy Fellow Program, which pairs a Slalom consultant with a local nonprofit in a three-month pro bono engagement.
Customer Engagement consultant Mary Krogermeier joined with StolenYouth to focus on five key areas:
Best practices – identifying, prioritizing, and implementing
Overall strategy – helping to clarify the focus and guide discussions
Marketing – developing a clear and agreed-upon plan and executing next steps to better reach target audiences and measure success
Operations – reviewing systems and processes to identify roadmap for improvement, including establishing a donor management system
Board development – identifying ways to help grow and develop the board
After conversations with StolenYouth staff, board members, and grantees, along with research on best practices for similar organizations, Mary helped the nonprofit better understand what it’s doing right … and what it needs to do to better engage with volunteers and donors in its local community.
“Partnering with Slalom has provided our grassroots nonprofit organization with a much needed infrastructure,” says StolenYouth President and Co-Founder, Patty Fleischmann. “They have helped guide us in a direction that will help ensure sustainability and growth. The founders and board members are deeply grateful for the opportunity to work with such a professional, caring, and insightful organization like Slalom.”