CAP continues to monitor the issue of sexual crimes against children here in this country and we are pleased to see the opening of the first official safe house in Costa Rica. We applaud founder Maria Fejervary and her team for the efforts in making this a reality and we will keep you appraised as we hear of more progress with other safe houses and hopefully stronger law enforcement to protect the children of this country from any form of sexual exploitation. Please read the below article reprinted from Inside Costa Rica.
Salvando Corazones (Saving Hearts) Receives Permit
Safe House for Child Survivors of Sexual Exploitation to Open Doors Soon
The 4th of July was an important day for Guanacaste-based nonprofit Salvando Corazones. After two years of preparation, it received a license from the Ministry of Health to operate a safe house for young female victims of sexual enslavement.
Maria Jesus Gonzalez, Area Rectora de Salud is quoted as saying, “This is an historic day for us as this is the first license of its kind ever issued in Costa Rica.”
Salvando Corazones is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the fight against the trafficking of children into the sex industry in Costa Rica. Child survivors of commercial sexual exploitation living in Salvando safe houses will receive schooling, rehabilitative services, and the unconditional love and support of a dedicated staff.
Executive Director Maria Fejervary is currently overseeing small-scale renovations to the house including the installation of banisters and the conversion of bathrooms for handicapped accessibility. Before Salvando can begin accepting children into the home, it will need to furnish it and secure operating costs for at least one year of operation.
Every year, thousands of children are traded and abused in Costa Rica’s sex industry. Until now, there has never been a safe location in which to place rescued children. Fejervary says that the opening of this first safe house is just a start, and that more are in the works. “But all the safe houses in the world are not going to fix the core problem.
We need to do something to stop the sexual exploitation of children in Costa Rica,” she added. “If we’re going to make a real difference, we’ll need a lot of help from government agencies, community partners, and the public. This needs to be a group effort.”
To learn more about the organization and how you can contribute, visit its website at www.salvandocorazones.org.
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