The development, implementation, and evaluation of a stable and effective CATE is a multiyear project that began in March of 2018. The overall goal of CATE is to prevent and respond to all forms of human trafficking and exploitation within the Missouri region. We work towards this goal by increasing knowledge and skills for prevention and intervention. As well as by increasing collaboration and community engagement in addressing exploitation and trafficking.
One of CATE’s Collaborative Partner organizations, Healing Action, serves as the coalition’s home and fiscal sponsor. CATE currently receives support from local foundations and corporations.
Currently, the CATE meetings are held at the Healing Action office. A specific address is provided when someone RSVP’s to a meeting invitation
The CATE leadership is made up of executive leaders within the Collaborative Partner organizations.
Collaborative Partner organizations are organizations that have made anti-trafficking interventions an organizational priority, strictly adhere to shared values, share responsibility and resources, and are considered equal partners in the leadership of CATE.
CATE is based in St. Louis, MO and currently serves the Eastern District of Missouri. As CATE continues to build infrasructure and grow it’s membership, the coalition will move statewide.
In 2005, the St. Louis Rescue and Restore Coalition was created by local organizations working against human trafficking and was led by the International Institute of St. Louis (IISTL).
This was the first coalition to fight trafficking in the St. Louis area and its main goal was to provide a space for professionals to collaborate on efforts regarding awareness, training, and victim service provision.
These efforts continued unfunded until 2011 when IISTL received a federal grant from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
This grant focused on capacity building and gave IISTL the opportunity to work with other organizations to create Rescue and Restore Coalitions in other a parts of the state. At this time the leadership of the St. Louis R&R Coalition was moved to Catholic Charities Southside until 2014, when Coalition leadership returned to IISTL due to restriction in funding.
The 2014 grant also had stipulations to focus more direct outreach efforts on foreign-born victims therefore leading the Coalition to focus more on labor trafficking. Due to these changes, the portion of the Coalition that served primarily victims of domestic sex trafficking supported the creation of the Coalition Against Trafficking and Exploitation (CATE) under the leadership of the Crime Victim Advocacy Center (CVAC).
At this time, CATE’s focus was education, awareness, and community outreach focusing on issues of domestic sex trafficking. Due to a loss of funding and leadership change at the host agency, the coalition was at risk of closing.
In March of 2018, Healing Action stepped in to resume responsibilities of CATE and began the process of rebranding and rebuilding. In the fall of 2018 The Covering House joined Healing Action as a Collaborative Partner to ensure CATE continues to grow and flourish.
The development, implementation, and evaluation of a stable and effective CATE coalition is a multiyear project.