If you are a hands-on volunteer through our organization, a sponsor to our survivors, or simply someone who supports us and shares the information we provide, you know well how Alabaster Jar Project restores, rehabilitates, and empowers survivors of human trafficking through providing a variety of therapeutic services. But you may not know where our moniker comes from or what it means.
Our name, Alabaster Jar Project, is derived from an ancient story about a nameless woman in the bible, and though this story is of the Christian Faith, it transcends all religious ties as it is a message of hope… For everyone.
The story goes that one evening, Jesus was having dinner with friends and a courageous woman scandalously crashed the dinner party, broke open and poured out precious and expensive oils from an alabaster jar all over Jesus’s head. This was scandalous because she was a single woman and in that culture could have been stoned for this act. Some of the people at the dinner criticized this woman for wasting something that could have been sold and given to the poor, but Jesus persuaded them that she was doing the right thing: That she had given her most valuable possession to bravely honor someone whom she loved and was grateful for. (Matthew 26:7, Mark 14:3, Luke 7:37.)
When we see each survivor come through our doors with nothing and leave with a higher education, steady employment, healthy coping habits, boosted confidence and self-esteem, it is as if they are breaking their metaphorical alabaster jar to completely heal their lives. They make a choice to take the tiniest spark of hope, energy, and skills that they have left and rebuild everything from scratch. It doesn’t happen overnight because it certainly is not easy, but through our therapeutic residential program and ongoing aftercare, we see rebirth happen, slowly but surely, on a constant basis.
Our survivor staff is a wonderful example of the woman with the alabaster jar, as they are experts in healing from exploitation trauma. They use what precious skills and knowledge they have to help heal others who stand where they once stood. Our survivor community is a strong group of close-knit women who give and receive necessary peer support to generate long-term success for each other.
Whether you are a Christian or simply a giving person who supports our organization, you will recognize that our name is a message of hope and paying it forward. Although most of you, our supporters, are not survivors of exploitation, when you partner with us, you are pouring out of your alabaster jar to encourage and support the sisters we serve, who have gone through a very literal hell-on-Earth, to find strength and rebuild their lives. Thank you for supporting that strength, for when you do, you are partnering with us to spread our message of hope.
Alabaster Jar Project is a community project purposed to change the ways human trafficking is harming San Diego County by providing therapeutic care and resources to survivors who are seeking help. To become a part of this mission, visit our website for volunteer, donation, and outreach opportunities.
written by Amanda Moon Ellevis