About the Blue Door Program
The Blue Door is a new St. John’s based program that is operated through Thrive. This program is the first of its kind in NL and is designed to support individuals, primarily between the ages of 14-29, to exit sex trade activities, and/or sexually exploitive situations including sex trafficking. The program is inclusive of gender & sexual orientation.
Why the Blue Door Program Exists
There has been an increase in sexual exploitation in recent years. This includes use of internet/social media sites, web-based advertisements, street-based sex work/exploitation, massage parlours, strip clubs, phone work, in and out call work, and escort services.
A decade ago, service providers working in shelters, group homes, outreach services and other front-line social service agencies were seeing an increase in the number of sexually exploited youth and individuals engaged in the sex trade. They also identified a growing number who were engaging in survival sex; trading sex for a place to stay, food, drugs, etc.
Sex Trade activities can be defined as the exchange of money, goods, or resources for sexual services, and is inclusive of all forms of sexual commerce. The Blue Door Program anticipates working with a majority of youth and adults who are engaged in survival sex.
Experiential people report that it is very difficult to exit the sex trade without intense supports and research supports these local stories.
What services does the Blue Door offer?
The Blue Door offers intensive, individualized services and supports that addresses key barriers to the exiting process and helps participants move forward with dignity, self-determination and respect. Specifically, it focuses on social isolation, complex trauma & mental health, substance use, low literacy/education, employment opportunities, and assistance with accessing safe, affordable housing. In addition, each Blue Door participant can expect to receive individualized intensive support and will have the opportunity to avail of case management services, exiting skills development, transition planning, and individual theraputic counselling.
Referring to the Blue Door Program
The Blue Door Program welcomes and is inclusive of anyone in the metro St. John’s area who wants to exit any form of sex work or sexual exploitation.
The only criteria for this program is a desire to exit sex work and/or exploitation. Because, on average, most individuals make many attempts to leave sex work and/or exploitation several times before successfully doing so, Blue Door will accept referrals for individuals who may not be currently involved but whom have had recent sex work or exploitation experiences.
Anyone can refer to the program and self referrals are also welcomed.
How to contact us
Blue Door Director – Mary Fearon 754-0536 ext. 202
Support Coordinator – Erin Law 754-0536 ext. 212
Mental Health Counsellor – vacant 754-0536 ext. 208
Employment and Education Instructor – Krista Cahill 754-0536 ext. 213
Support Coordinator – Kerri Rowe 754-0536 ext. 209