TAMAR'S PLACE . . . WELCOME!
“It’s so good to have a place like this to get away from all that out there!”
The U.S. Area Mission for women in prostitution was opened on June 7th, 2010 with an Open House at Tamar’s Place. We invited the women whom we will be serving, the local community agencies in Over-the-Rhine, the Franciscan Sisters of the Poor and their Associates. Our location in New Prospect Baptist Church (Over-the-Rhine – Cincinnati, OH) has two bathrooms and a large sitting area, which complements our ministry. We offer an array of toiletry articles, a light breakfast, coffee and a welcoming, non-judgmental listening ear.
To encourage women to visit us, we began passing out bottled water (with Tamar’s Place cards affixed to them) to the women on the streets -- and when they came, we welcomed them. We became known to a few women who, in turn, told others about us. By the end of our first month in operation, fourteen women used our services. Five have come frequently, and we have referred two to Off the Streets for rehabilitation.
Sisters and Volunteers Support and Pray for this Ministry
In the Off the Streets program, women who are ready to quit a ‘life’ of prostitution receive supportive counseling, guidance and training for career choices, job readiness and a place to live. Not only do we have two sisters who are volunteers – Sr. Mary Lawrence Vanderburg and Sr. Adelaide Link – but we also have two volunteers working with us who are successful, employed graduates of Off the Streets!
When we first opened our doors, the women came in to use the bathroom, asked for food and drink and then quickly took it back out with them. Before long, however, they realized that we wouldn’t ‘pressure’ them, so they began to stay longer. One woman, during her fifth visit, pointed to the street and said, “It’s so good to have a place like this to get away from all that out there!” What a joy it was to hear this comment so early in our endeavors! I attribute it to the Sisters’ belief in the ministry, their prayers and their volunteer services -- and Blessed Frances’ special blessing upon it: after all, such was her first ministry in Aachen, Germany.
We hope that the supportive environment of Tamar’s Place will help women develop the emotional and psychological strength to realize their personal worth, dignity and potential, thus helping them take the first steps toward recovery. However, making a resolve to quit is not enough – they need more help. . .
|Welcome to Tamar’s Place - a look inside...||A warm and homelike atmosphere where the women can rest without pressure|
For this reason, it is our dream to facilitate wisdom circles around the table where Off the Streets’ graduates and active prostitutes can meet for mutual support and encouragement. Graduates can talk about how they dealt with Off the Streets’ intensive individual and group counseling and weathered the struggles and challenges of their recovery. Women still active in the ‘life’ style can ask questions that allay their fears and doubts – and receive hope and courage.
In the graduates, they can see that there is an alternative to prostitution for them too - that people really will offer them this kind of supportive caring.
Sister Joanne Schuster, SFP and Sister Grace Miriam Pleiman, SFP