May 21, 2011

GEMS - Girls Are Not For Sale

Taken from GEMS website directly is more information:

Girls Educational & Mentoring Services (GEMS) is the only organization in New York State specifically designed to serve girls and young women who have experienced commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking. GEMS was founded in 1998 by Rachel Lloyd, a young woman who had been sexually exploited as a teenager. GEMS has helped hundreds of young women and girls, ages 12–24, who have experienced commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking to exit the commercial sex industry and to develop to their full potential. GEMS provides young women with empathetic, consistent support and viable opportunities for positive change. 

Girls Educational and Mentoring Services’ (GEMS) mission is to empower girls and young women, ages 12–24, who have experienced commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking to exit the commercial sex industry and develop to their full potential.  GEMS is committed to ending commercial sexual exploitation and domestic trafficking of children by changing individual lives, transforming public perception, and revolutionizing the systems and policies that impact sexually exploited youth.

GEMS’ vision is to end the commercial exploitation and trafficking of children. 

We believe that all young women have great beauty and worth, and the potential for future success. The voices and experiences of youth survivors are integral to the development and implementation of all GEMS’ programming. 

GEMS, was founded in 1998 by Rachel Lloyd, a young woman who had been commercially sexually exploited as a teenager. Ms. Lloyd came to the U.S in 1997 as a missionary to work with adult women exiting prostitution. While working with adult women in correctional facilities and on the streets, Ms. Lloyd observed the overwhelming need for services for young women at risk for sexual exploitation who were being ignored by traditional social service agencies. It became clear that specialized services were essential for this disenfranchised population.
From a one-woman kitchen table project, GEMS has grown to a nationally recognized and acclaimed organization and now is one of the largest providers of services to commercially sexually exploited and domestically trafficked youth in the US. GEMS advocates at the local, state and national level to promote policies that support young women who have been commercially sexually exploited and domestically trafficked.

This is a preventative epidemic. It happens each day, to more and more girls, young women, grown women. We don't hear much, I think, because subjects on this matter are sadly considered "taboo", and we live in an age where these sort of things couldn't possibly happen. Girls aren't sold out, prostituted, abused, left without hope. Unfortunately- it is true. And the longer people stay quiet about these behaviors, the more it enables those who exploit these children and women to continue what they do, without consequence.

It's time to make a serious change.

Racheal from Antoinette's Revolution Cosmetics and Tina from Dark Heart Designs are teaming up to provide donations of products to roughly 50 girls currently seeking help and receiving services from GEMS. These little "Surprise Goodie Bags" are sure to bring a smile to their faces, and encourage them to find the natural beauty which resides inside each of them. You like getting surprise bags, right? This is no different- and it supports a great cause!

Rachael and Tina (along with some of us bloggers rallying around this great surprise) are trying to collect either monetary or product donations. One of Rachael's friends is hand-crafting and donating all 50 gift bags. Additionally, if you're a makeup company owner and would like to donate either samples or full sized jars of your product, you're more than able to. Please- feel free to donate only as much as you can. A dollar, while not much, is still a dollar more than they had before.

In total, there will be 50 "Surprise Goodie Bags" put together and delivered to the girls. The idea is once they receive them, they can mix, match, and swap colors/items with other girls. So if you donate products, you don't have to give 50. It can be any number you are able to donate. The donations which are needed most are for Nyx Cosmetics Jumbo Pencils in Milk and Black Bean. Used most commonly as eye-shadow primers/bases, there are more donations of these which are a need at this time. There are different online stores which offer the pencils for a discounted price, as well as eBay listings which they can be bought for a deal. Two of the best online places to purchase the Nyx Milk & Black Jumbo Pencils are from Beauty Joint and from Cherry Culture. Any other monetary or product donations, no matter how much, would be greatly appreciated!

You can contact Racheal at: arcpigments[at]gmail[dot]com
You can contact Tina at: Tina[at]darkheardesigns[dot]com

Please help us in bringing a smile to these girls' faces, and allowing them to gain back their self confidence, to know that we believe they are beautiful, to let their artistic creativity be expressed by and through makeup! To the girls, they'll know there are those of us who do not need to know them in order to help them brighten up their day.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post ladies and gents. If you'd like to make a monetary donation, I've put a button in the right hand column of my blog, at the very top. I also ask that you please share this post by tweeting, facebook, even linking back to me if you want. Make sure word gets out- we can use all the help we can get!

We can make a difference!!
x0x0x0 ~*Snarky P

** All images used in this post were taken from the website. In order to purchase bracelets, t-shirts, and buttons, you can visit their online shop to show your support!
I have not been asked by this organization to write this article, nor am I affiliated with them in any way. Two of my friends, Racheal and Tina, have let me know they are participating in donating some of their products to the girls of GEMS. I am not affiliated with either woman's company, nor been asked by them to write this article.
It's up to us, as individuals, to spread the word and help make these surprise bags really super. The more support we have, the greater success it will be!


  1. I just snagged up abunch of 0.69 Wet n Wild lipsticks & liners from Walgreens to send. Plus I am thinking about getting 25 products from E.L.F for $25 and getting the deal with the 10 free shadows they have going on...I've just been watching the documentary of Very Young Girls as well. I wish I could just jar up abunch of Persephone Minerals stuff but I have pretty much run out of jars and sample bags! Since I am in the middle of moving, there's no point in making an order for a shipment of jars. It wouldn't get here by the time I move.

  2. @Persephone: Every little bit helps! And it's SO appreciated by all who are involved!! Thank you so much for helping out :)
    I hope your move goes smoothly, and you get settled in soon <3

  3. What a great initiative :) let me figure out some way that I can contribute!

  4. This is such an amazing cause. I'm going to have to find a way to help out