A charity launched by a regional daily paper after five prostitutes were murdered on its patch is helping to provide women with routes out of the sex industry.
The Somebody’s Daughter fund was created by Ipswich’s Evening Star following the killings of five vice girls in late 2006.
Since then, generous readers and businesses have donated more than £70,000 towards the Archant Suffolk daily’s appeal.
Now the charity’s trustees have awarded grants worth £29,000 to two local organisations working to break the cycle of prostitution and addiction.
A total of £20,000 is to be given to Talitha Koum, an innovative Christian project which will provide a safe house for those caught up in vice and substance misuse.
And a further £9,000 will be handed to the Prostitution Strategy’s Making a Change team, which works to provide emergency accommodation for homeless, vulnerable women.
Somebody’s Daughter was launched after the murders of Tania Nicol, Gemma Adams, Paula Clennell, Anneli Alderton and Annette Nicholls in late 2006.
All worked in the sex trade to fund crippling drug habits.
Star editor and appeal trustee Nigel Pickover said: “These grants support causes whose aims are closely linked to those of the Somebody’s Daughter appeal.
“The generosity of our readers will make an enormous difference to scores of vulnerable women in Ipswich – and their kindness is a fitting tribute to Tania, Gemma, Anneli, Annette and Paula.”
Talitha Koum will use the £20,000 to put towards the building of a safe community and rehabilitation centre north of Ipswich for women trying to escape from the clutches of vice and addiction.
Project leader John Cobbold said: “We are thrilled to receive this money because it will help us kick-start the centre. There is obviously a history of women becoming caught up in drugs in Ipswich and we are trying to offer them a route out.
“Our aim is to go through the route to the wound. By living, working and learning about faith and addiction, the women will be able to beat their problems.”
The centre will eventually accommodate up to 18 women who will receive professional counselling, guidance, health advice and a genuine opportunity to radically alter their lives.
Northern Snapper (24/09/2009 11:25:05)
Utterly commendable and a tribute to Mr Pickover’s proactive (no pun intended) approach.
Onlooker (24/09/2009 15:42:58)
I hope these girls show their gratitude to Mr Pickover in time honoured fashion…by buying his newspaper.
Punter (25/09/2009 10:40:14)
Somewhat ironic that a local paper is claiming credit for steering people away from vice when most of them are more than willing to accept cash for ‘personal services’ ads.