International Justice Mission is a global organisation with a plan to eliminate the slave trade everywhere.
IJM staff partner with local authorities to protect the poor from violence in 17 communities throughout the developing world in Cambodia, the Philippines, Thailand, Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, the Dominican Republic, Bolivia, Guatemala and South Asia.
We, at St Dionis, specifically support the Dominican Republic office.
IJM investigators, lawyers and social workers intervene in individual cases of abuse in partnership with state and local authorities in the countries in which they work. They work together to rescue victims, restrain criminals from hurting others, and restore survivors to safety and strength. Working in partnership with government authorities is the best long-term strategy to ensure that the poor are protected from violence.
Please join with us to pray for the work of IJM, in the Dominican Republic and worldwide.
Praise God for...
"Praise God our prayers to bring an end to child marriage in the Dominican Republic continue to bear fruit! On January 6, the country's President modified the Civil Code and other laws eliminating all legal exceptions that allowed child marriage. This is a historic day for the Dominican Republic! Yet, to ensure this ban is comprehensive and starts producing necessary change, our team continues to advocate for the Constitutional Court to declare child marriage unconstitutional so that other laws can be reformed. Pray for the implementation of this ban to be swift, just and successful in ensuring that children are protected from this harmful practice."
Learn more about this latest victory in the fight to end child marriage in the DR.
Praise God for an opportunity to sign an inter-institutional agreement to train judges, prosecutors and police on how to best address trafficking in the Dominican Republic. This unique opportunity will allow large-scale workshops to be held and will create long-term impact. Please pray for the pilot classes and for the hundreds of survivors who will later be served by these trained officials in a more effective and trauma-informed way.
IJM prayer update from the DR Field Office:
Pray for the millions of women and children in Central America suffering sexual and physical abuse due to the increase of violence resulting from lockdowns to contain COVID-19. As calls to helplines significantly increase due to domestic and sexual abuse through the region, pray for courage for victims to break the silence. Also pray for quick response from local authorities to protect them and for our team's safety as we continue to support local authorities during this pandemic.
Please pray for the team in the Dominican Republic as they care for survivors of sex trafficking amid strict quarantine measures set by the government to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Due to the crisis, many child survivors of exploitation are more vulnerable to being revictimised, especially the ones living in remote and vulnerable communities. The IJM team will distribute much-needed basic supplies for them. Pray for God's constant protection over the IJM staff, these survivors and their families.
Pray for God's wisdom over local governments as they consider extending lockdown or re-opening operations. Many of the region's economic and political systems were already fragile, and this virus could push them to a breaking point. Pray for God's protection upon the most vulnerable as these decisions are made on their behalf.
Please pray that God would draw the right person to serve as Country Director in the Dominican Republic. This person will lead IJM's work combatting sex trafficking in the DR, and will scale rescue and protection for vulnerable children. Pray that God would grant the recruiting team wisdom and discernment, and that this crucial role would be filled promptly.
Last year the IJM team in the Dominican Republic secured a 20-year sentence against a German citizen guilty of trafficking, physical and psychological abuse and sexual exploitation of two Haitian sisters. Recently, the aggressor appealed the sentence. The hearing for his appeal has been rescheduled twice already, delaying justice for the two survivors, and the next hearing is currently set for December. We urge you to pray that the hearing will not be suspended again and that the judge overseeing this appeal will uphold the previous sentence and rule with justice — serving as an example to other courts.
Pray for wisdom for all the collaborative casework staff as they make plans for the upcoming year. In 2020, they will continue to identify individual and local organisations who want to learn and contextualize IJM's model to provide legal and aftercare services for children survivors. Pray that God will lead IJM's staff to partner organisations who have a heart for justice and will walk with future survivors.
Pray for male survivors of sexual violence, sex trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation in Latin America. Through the years, our teams and partners in the field have been supporting them with legal services and trauma therapy. We have seen that male survivors experience violence and show trauma in a different way, and this requires the creation of different plans to provide them with the critical tools they need to reach restoration. Often, there is extra pressure for survivors who are males as their sexuality and manhood is questioned when they are interviewed in the different stages of their legal process by officials who haven’t received critical training in trauma-informed care or by people close to them who don’t fully understand what they went through. Please pray that all male survivors who we serve will experience true breakthrough in their healing process as we continue to seek justice in their cases.