Economic Empowerment Peer Learning Series Homepage

Welcome to the 2023 Economic Empowerment Peer Learning Series homepage!


Futures Without Violence’s Promoting Employment Opportunities for Survivors of Human Trafficking (PEOST) Project is pleased to be hosting its first economic empowerment peer learning series. This six week peer learning series will bring together victim service providers to share knowledge and expertise, identify economic empowerment best practices, and explore trauma-informed work readiness, career exploration, building self-efficacy, digital literacy, financial capability and asset building, and alternative economic opportunities.

Through these conversations, we will explore ways in which victim service agencies can develop new, or expand existing, economic empowerment programming that truly addresses the barriers to thriving for survivors, especially within marginalized and BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and Persons of Color) communities. By the end of this learning series, learners will be better able to:

  1. Assess current needs and gaps of economic empowerment programs.
  2. Identify best practices for the economic empowerment of survivors.
  3. Build relationships that enhance the economic empowerment of survivors.
  4. Advocate for better economic resources and strategies for survivors.
  5. Develop an economic empowerment action plan.

Below you will find all of the information you will need to participate in the series, including:

  • Pre-series work including a participant survey, needs assessment, community mapping exercise, and suggested readings
  • Meeting schedule and meeting link
  • Supplemental materials for each session
  • Post-session evaluations for each session and the series as a whole

If you have any questions, please contact Carolyne Ouya at


Please complete before Thursday May 4, 2023

Suggested reading:


The PEOST Team will host weekly office hours throughout the series to offer participants an opportunity to gain additional resources on Economic Empowerment and receive live support for weekly action planning.

Date: Wednesdays at 2:00pm – 3:00pm ET | 1:00pm – 2:00pm CT | 12:00pm – 1:00pm MT | 11:00am – 12:00pm PT

Zoom link:


Thursdays 1:00pm – 3:00pm ET | 12:00pm – 2:00pm CT | 11:00am – 1:00pm MT | 10:00am – 12:00pm PT

Weekly Meeting Link:


Week 1 [May 4]: Language Matters: Self-Sufficiency to Economic Empowerment. 

Week 2 [May 11]: Healing through Trauma-Informed Work Readiness

Week 3 [May 18]: (Re)Building a Vision of the Future through Career Exploration

  • Description:Survivors are often relegated to entry level jobs without much choice or exposure to dynamic employment options. This peer learning session will discuss innovative ways to promote survivor agency, job retention, and growth through engagement in various occupations that match their unique career preferences and interests.
  • Facilitators: Carolyne Ouya and Sarah Gonzalez w/FUTURES
  • Materials/Resources:

Week 4 [May 25]: Innovative Skill & Experience Building Opportunities for Survivors

  • Description: Survivors often struggle with complicated work history and lack of formal experience in their career field of choice. This peer learning session will explore ways that economic empowerment programs can provide survivors with multiple avenues to develop a basic and formal work history, along with experience in their career field of choice.
  • Facilitators: Rebecca Sisneros, Youth Engagement Coordinator, New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions
  • Materials:

Week 5 [June 1]: Engaging Employers and Building Safe and Sustainable Employment for Survivors

  • Description: Economic Empowerment programs often struggle with engaging employment partners who understand the challenges survivors face in the workplace. And survivors may struggle to maintain safe and sustainable employment without support in navigating the workforce. This peer learning series will explore how to identify and vet employment partners, address confidentiality concerns between victim service agencies and employers, and support survivors in maintaining employment.
  • Facilitators: Sarah Hayes, Director of Economic Mobility, Sanctuary for Families; Sarah Swanson, Director, IPS Learning Community, IPS Employment Center
  • Materials:

Week 6 [June 8]: Measuring Success of Survivor-Centered Economic Empowerment Programs

  • Description: Traditional employment programs measure success by how many certifications are obtained and job retention. However, are these measures of success the same for survivor centered economic empowerment programs? How do we know that programs and initiatives are working?  This peer learning series will explore varying strategies of measuring success of economic empowerment programs for survivors.
  • Facilitators: Sandra Diaz, Director of Impact and Evaluation, Restore NYC
  • Materials: Restore NYC PPT