About The Landing
The Landing is the name of our daytime drop-in center here in Houston, located on Bissonnet.
The idea of the drop-in center has been on the hearts of the co-founders since early 2014, but May 2015 was when the dream started becoming a reality. What we realized is that there is no place to build immediate trust with an individual before he/she realizes that they are a victim of human trafficking. Most short term and long term safe homes are in undisclosed locations. Houston has a few long term/short term safe homes; what we’re lacking are publicly accessible places where victims can go to receive basic necessities, rest, counseling, prayer and referrals. We are here to build trust and empower a survivor to understand the choices he/she has. We were directed to start the drop-in center on Bissonnet because it is one of the hotspots for sex trafficking/prostitution in Houston.
Yes, we are open to serving any survivor of human trafficking and those working in the commercial sex industry.
No, we will serve a survivor of any age. However, there are certain regulations in place if we serve a minor.
Our mission includes serving individuals who have been labor trafficked, although we don’t expect to see many labor trafficking cases.
We partner with other organizations close to us that will provide these services to our clients. An individual is usually touched by multiple social service organizations that help meet his/her needs. When we do our needs assessment, we will find out the various needs, and if we can’t meet them – we will refer him/her to a partner organization and we will provide transportation, when possible, to those appointments.
Yes, our staff and Board of Directors are Christians, and we have built our culture and values on sharing the love of Christ. We share the love of Christ by serving others without judgement, although those we serve do not need to follow the Christian faith.
The Landing is funded by individuals, major donors, and church partnerships. If you know someone who would like to help fund us, please direct them to our website, www.thelanding.org/give.
We are hoping to be a 24/7 drop-in center in the future; however, we do not have the capacity or funding to do so at this time. The drop-in center is open on Monday from 10am-4pm for males only and Tuesday, Wednesday, & Thursday from 10am-4pm for women. Our staff works Monday-Friday from 8:30am-5:00pm and as necessary after hours and during weekends. Case Managers work with current clients even outside of normal drop-in center hours. We never want to make promises we can’t keep or provide lower quality services – which is why we have chosen to start small and grow as capacity allows.
Yes, we have 24/7 cameras, panic buttons, and an alarm system in place. We also work closely with Houston Police Department and S.E.A.L. Security to ensure the safety of our staff and volunteers during outreach, as well as if an emergency situation would occur at the drop-in center.
There are various levels of force, fraud or coercion that a trafficking victim may experience. We don’t expect to see a victim who is physically restraint or locked up in a room and forced to work. Those are the victims that would be rescued by law enforcement, once an investigation is done. We expect to see victims who are threatened and manipulated, but have the ability to go to places alone because their trafficker trusts that individual. These individuals often do not realize they are a trafficking victim.
Three of the four drop-in centers we have visited in Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York are in office building locations. There are pros and to cons to being in an office building. The reason we decided to open in a office building is for the security and privacy of survivors. Pimps/traffickers are less likely to know where a victim is going when he/she walks into an office building and it also lowers the amount of shame a victim may feel if community members saw her/him walking into a more public facility.
The Landing has many different volunteer opportunities including: 1) Skill Builder/Admin Volunteers, 2) Prayer Volunteers, 3) Event Team Volunteers, 4) Transportation Volunteers, 5) Table Volunteers, and 6) Outreach Volunteers. If you have questions regarding a particular volunteer role, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are interested in volunteering with The Landing, visit the volunteer page for more information.
We are always looking for passionate, committed volunteers to serve alongside us. Please visit our volunteer page to learn how you can join The Landing family. The process includes submitting an application, passing a background check, and attending a volunteer training. Contact us with any questions you may have by emailing email@example.com.
We require our volunteers to pay the fee for a background check because we want to ensure all of our volunteers are committed and to do our due diligence for the safety of our clients. The work we do requires a high level of security clearance, which costs $39. (In some cases, the background checks may cost more than $39 depending on where you have lived in the past. We suggest you go through the background application before finding out the final cost of the background check.) Out of 80 volunteers we trained in 2016 year, 15-20 are actually active volunteers. If we paid for every background check, The Landing would lose a significant amount of money on volunteers who don’t spend time serving with The Landing - money that could be used to serve our clients more effectively. Our Board has decided incurring the fees for background checks is not fiscally responsible since we are supported through generous donors. However, we never want a lack of funds to prevent anyone from serving alongside The Landing. If a volunteer does not have the means to pay the $39, we will gladly discuss the situation and find a way to help provide the funds. We will ask for a commitment of volunteering at least once a month for one year from all volunteers we help provide funds. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or concerns.