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Federal Grant Will Help Project Oz Curb Sexual Exploitation

“The efforts of Project Oz to combat youth homelessness, exploitation, and sex trafficking are crucial not just for McLean County, but for Illinois as a whole.

“Project Oz is exactly the kind of local resource we need to prevent this criminal industry from growing and save at-risk children in our communities from becoming victims. Thank you to the team at Project Oz for helping make a difference in the lives of children in Central Illinois.”
–U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Taylorville WGLT Article Link

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“The grant will help Project Oz pay for nine new beds for homeless youth who are at risk of exploitation or already being exploited,” said Project Oz Vice President Lisa Thompson. “Many homeless youth who are being exploited are engaging in some type of “survival sex. Picture an 18-year-old who’s staying with someone 40 years older than her, giving her food and a place to stay in exchange for a sexual relationship.”

Lisa Thompson is vice president at Project Oz in Bloomington.

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