HUSTLE: Men on the Move Outreach and Support Service
Written By: Matthew Taylor
HUSTLE: men on the Move is an outreach and support program which effectively offers a male/youth specific component to PEERS Vancouver Resource Society www.peersvancouver.org. HUSTLE is designed and implemented by experiential individuals who see a need for specific front-line programming / support services serving survival male/Trans sex workers. Specific and significant attention is also given to identifying and supporting street involved youth who may be at risk of exploitation in Vancouver Communities.
HUSTLE is the first male/youth initiative supported by the BC Coalition of Experiential Communities, www.bccec.wordpress.com. Since the spring of 2007 with core funding received by the CKNW Orphan's fund, HUSTLE began to offer services to male, trans and youth clients and our list of community partners and allies continues to grow significantly. In our second year of program delivery, HUSTLE has also been successful in diversifying our funding sources in order to expand the youth outreach component (EYMP) as well as develop programming specific to our survival male sex worker population through private donor funding.
Our traditional on-street outreach services are currently offered late night evenings and weekends as well as weekly visits to various drop in programs and resource centers. We provide a variety of harm reduction/comfort supports as well as nutrition and hygiene items upon request. Since the program began, HUSTLE has been very successful at engaging youth by meeting them where they are at and offering them support in the moment when many need it the most. We also continue to be a critical lifeline of support to the population of male/trans sex workers by engaging with them in the natural networks and venues that they access and frequent, such as stroll/track, internet cafes, and existing community organizations.
A major component of this program is peer and crisis support in the moment. By providing consistent, non-judgmental services, over the past two years of service delivery, HUSTLE has built positive and meaningful relationships that foster trust and respect. Overall, HUSTLE has been instrumental in helping to create a sense of community on the street and increase the overall health and safety of male/trans survival sex workers and street involved youth that may be at risk of exploitation in Vancouver.
In the past year, HUSTLE has received significant private donor funding which has allowed for the expansion of our support services and programming with the new HUSTLE ‘N’ FLOW support groups for survival male sex worker and those who identify as male. These groups are currently offered weekly and provide men of all ages a safe and comfortable atmosphere to share their experiences, challenges and resilience with their peers. HUSTLE continues to help empower male sex workers through group support, thus creating a sense of community and increasing their overall health and safety. HUSTLE has also expanded the staff to include a male support worker who, together with the Program Director assists in the facilitation of the support groups as well as provide one on one follow through supports and counseling for an increasing/emerging client base.
In an effort to remain accountable to the specific population of youth, male/trans program participants, HUSTLE has engaged in an evaluation of the program for two consecutive years in a row.
The comparative analysis of both years points to two primary differences between the 2009/2008 program evaluations; an increased number of interviews overall (43% more interviews completed in 2009) and the increased number of youth included in the sample (23 in 2009 in contrast to 1 in 2008). Over half the sample was comprised of people 24 yrs of age and under which highlights the fact that the consistency of HUSTLE supports and services along side the creation of the Experiential Youth outreach mentor ship position has been extremely successful in building meaningful and effective relationships with street involved youth. Overall, the HUSTLE program has grown in the last year, deepened its relationships with other service providers, community members, and most importantly, the youth, men and trans sex workers that HUSTLE works to support.
It is imperative that existing front line programs such as HUSTLE continue to expand and develop our programs and services in anticipation of an increase in the need for outreach and support to street involved youth and survival male/trans sex workers who continue to be some of our most vulnerable people in community.
HUSTLE will continue our efforts in providing the most effective services possible and look forward to working closely with our community partners and funders for the upcoming year. Simply put, the more time we spend together, the less time we are alone. Peace
HUSTLE: Men on the Move, is the first male sex worker initiative supported by the BC Coalition of Experiential Communities (BCCEC), www.bccec.wordpress.com and has been offering front line services to male and Trans survival sex workers as well as street involved youth since May of 2007. The BCCEC is a group of former and current sex workers who work to increase community knowledge surrounding health and safety, education and policy development for sex industry workers inclusive of gender and sexual identity as well as promote experiential leadership.
When it comes to the male and Trans perspective, there is no one reality that can adequately define or represent they’re involvement in sex work. Rather, there are many realities out there for the male and Trans folks, both young and old, who are involved in sex work. Each brings with them very unique lives and experiences. No doubt, at the end of the day there is common ground between all of us, namely the element of survival. However, from personal experience and the experiences that many men and Trans sex workers have shared, it is the difference in the method and motivation for why they sell their bodies for survival that results in them working in the industry ‘Under the Radar’.
As research conducted by Dr. Sue McIntrye in ‘Under the Radar: The Sexual Exploitation of Young Men’ (2007) www.hindsightgroup.com supports, when it comes to sex work, society still views the industry very much through a female lens. Thus, it has become clear that the majority of supports and services offered for sex workers in the community are gender exclusive, offering assistance primarily to women, with any supports for male/Trans sex workers seen very much as an after thought.
It was also in 2006/2007 that the Living in Community Initiative began city wide in Vancouver. LIC was a series of community bases consultations that engaged with residents, business owners, sex workers and many community organizations in an effort to stimulate dialogue, promote awareness and bridge partnerships in neighborhoods impacted by issues of street level sex work. Participation was encouraged from all members of Vancouver’s diverse communities to share their experiences and knowledge in the spirit of moving forward together and eliminating the negative aspects of sex work in Vancouver communities. Once again, this process engaged with sex workers themselves inclusive of gender and sexual identity and served to reinforce the notion that little if any supports and services exist in community to adequately assist our men and Trans folks that are involved in the sex industry. Out of these consultations came a comprehensive report on the issues of sex work in Vancouver as well as series of recommendations designed to improve the health and safety of all members of community impacted by sex work. Thus, out of personal experience, research recommendations and a recognition by community of the need for more specialized sex worker supports and services, HUSTLE: Men on the Move was born.
Program Overview and Mandate
HUSTLE: Men on the Move is an outreach and support program which effectively offers a male/youth specific component to PEERS Vancouver Resource Society. PEERS Vancouver has been working tirelessly in community for almost a decade now and continues to offer sex workers, inclusive of all gender and sexual identities, safe, non-judgmental supports and services. Essentially, PEERS is about options towards transitioning into
HUSTLE is designed and implemented by experiential individuals who see a need for an increase in specific front-line programming / support services for survival male/Trans sex workers. Attention is also given to identifying and supporting street involved youth who may be at risk of exploitation in Vancouver Communities.
CKNW Orphan’s fund is the original funding body for HUSTLE and continues to support the outreach component, which is the cornerstone of the HUSTLE Program. In the third year of operation, HUSTLE has further diversified funding and receives support from the Vancouver Foundation, City of Vancouver as well as substantial funding for support work and programming expansion from a Private donor foundation.
HUSTLE is actively seeking to diversify our funding to secure program sustainability and currently has letters of intent and interest in the following funding sources/foundations:
Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) – Pilot project to expand HIV testing, treatment and supprt services to clinically eligible individuals in vancouver Communities
Vancouver Foundation - Youth Homelessness Initiative would provide grants to organizations that target compex issues of youth homlessness and assist in increasing access to, maintenance of and housing for at risk youth in Vancouver communities.
Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) – explore options for future funding of the outreach component of the HUSTLE program as well as developing specific life skills options to assist youth in transitioning to healthier lifestyles;
HUSTLE provides traditional on-street outreach in the form of Harm Reduction/Safer Sex materials, nutrition and hygiene items as well as a Safe Needle Exchange. A major component of this program is one on one peer and crisis support in the moment. By providing consistent, non-judgmental services, over time, we continue to nurture a sense of community, thus increasing the overall health and safety of male sex workers and youth that may be exploited on the streets of Vancouver.
HUSTLE outreach services and program delivery are currently offered late night weekends (Fri and Sat.) as well as weekly visits to various drop-ins and resource centers. Regular office hours are Monday to Thursday from 11am-4pm when the emerging client base can make appointments with a support worker for one-on-one counseling and follow through supports when necessary.
HUSTLE have been successful at engaging youth by meeting them where they are at as well as supporting the population of male/Trans sex workers in the natural networks and venues that they access and frequent, such as stroll/track, internet cafes, and existing community organizations. By showing consistency in our services, HUSTLE has built relationships that foster trust and respect and continues to value, embrace and utilize the authentic voice and experience of exploited youth as well as experiential knowledge and skills of men in the sex industry as a vehicle towards change.
On line Outreach
More and more, we have noticed a decrease in visible street presence of survival sex workers/ at risk youth and an increase in online profiling through various social networking sites (SNS) and online dating/chat forums. Recognizing that we have a responsibility to be where our clients are organizing themselves, PEERS/HUSTLE has initiated on line relationships with clients, many of whom who, otherwise, would fall under our radar.
Advantages to have an online presence with clients include: Daily profile updating, setting and reminding of counselling appointments, upcoming workshop information, current locations of on street presence, health and safety information and generalized outreach and support. Clients in crisis who contact us online through messaging or chat forums are encouraged to call for follow up support directly or given the appropriate referrals upon request. Having an online presence with our clients is not meant to replace traditional street presence but has proven effective in beginning the support relationship to be followed up with face to face enagement ina timely manner.
Our Program Evaluation(s) from the last 2 years has highlighted several internet sites where clients have disclosed a presence on for the purposes of working and/or socializing. Some of these dating sites require personalized profiles that make it difficult for a support program to join pending further policy at a organizational level. Below is a list of the online sites HUSTLE currently has been successful at posting profiles/services on and where HUSTLE outreach actively monitors on a regular basis:
The Naked Truth
Because online outreach is an area that is very new to support services, little research around policy and procedure with respect to the internet privacy and protection (both clients and organization) currently exists. To date, our online outreach is restricted to a few of the more popular SNS due to issues of policy, program staffing, training, space, equipment, time and energies necessary to focus attention on this much needed area of support.
HUSTLE is currently in the process of working with PEERS Vancouver to developing a pilot program that will focus specifically online and is to address areas relating to:
HUSTLE Program Director continues to offer one-on-one counseling and support to an emerging client base. Typically, such supports will include crisis intervention, treatment/addiction recovery and mental health referrals, applications for replacement identification, detox/medical referrals as well as goal setting and individual case management and planning. Currently, there are no wait lists for appointments and there is flexibility of time as well as location in an attempt to best support and accommodate the client according where they may feel safer and most comfortable to engage HUSTLE services.
Elements is a 6month Lifeskills/Employability program. The goal of the Elements program is to decrease reliance on sex work, increase personal empowerment and re-integrate into mainstream employment.
Phase I lifeskills workshops focus on providing men with the tools necessary to increase their personal empowerment and overall health/wellness. Phase I workshops are offered every Monday Afternoon 1-3pm @ PEERS Vancouver. Workshops include:
Communication Healing Male shame
Boundaries Exploring our Feelings
Safety training True Colours
Phase II focuses on employability workshops meant to prepare participants for mainstream employment and help them become job-ready. Phase II integrates men and women together on Thursday afternoons 1-3pm @ PEERS Vancouver. Workshops include:
Resume Writing Interview Skills
Cover Letters Barriers to Employment
One to One
An important component of the Elements Program is individual counselling and support. Our aim is to help participants feeling more comfortable in a group setting, goal planning, crisis intervention, relapse prevention, advocacy accompaniment and community referrals as needed.
Male Sex Worker Support Groups: HUSTLE'N'FLOW (HNF)
HUSTLE is currently partnered with many other programs and services in our community. One such important collaboration is with VCH and the Boys'R'Us (BRU) dinner drop-in program @ Three Bridges CHC.
Together, and with our participants, we have developed a support group for the men called HUSTLE'N'FLOW(HNF), a bi-monthly information/orientation group that aims to bring in various programs/organizations in community to introduce themselves and the services/supports that they can offer our participants. HNF runs every second Wednesday from 730-830pm at BRU. It is the goal of the group to help facilitate positive changes in the lives of participants and increase their health nd safety by familiarizing them with supports/services that exist in communities where they live and work.
This past year, while in custody, clients have initiated contact with the outreach team to access the services provided through HUSTLE, and remain connected through a number of the programs we offer. They continue to be active participants and have taken on the added responsibility of developing a support program through our organization that will effectively meet some of their needs and goals while completing the remainder of their sentence. Communication through phone calls and letter correspondence has been consistent between HUSTLE Program Director and clients, and we continue to move forward. Along with commitment to recovery and rehabilitation through programs currently offerred through B.C Corrections, clients also connect with HUSTLE to help establish contact with family, access specific supports, counselling, advocacy and referrals to appropriate services in community so that they have the best chance at a new start when released. Essentially, HUSTLE is their eyes and ears on the outside.
Since HUSTLE is a relatively new program in the community, our work with clients in B.C Corrections has been very effective with respect to helping to develop a personalized support delivery model that will be useful for future clients serving time in B.C corrections who are seeking similar support.
Matthew Taylor is the founder and Program Director for HUSTLE: Men on the Move. Matthew was born and raised in our Nation’s capital and moved to Vancouver B.C in 1996. He became involved in sex work, working both on street and off and has now been exited from the industry for over 3yrs. Since that time, he continues to be actively engaged in several community-based initiatives with involvement in various important action groups and committees. Matthew hopes that by using his voice and experience, he can help raise awareness of men and Trans involved in sex work and increase health and safety for all members of community that are impacted by the sex industry in Vancouver. Matthew is a member of the BC Coalition of Experiential Communities and has worked with CIHS (Community Initiative for Health and Safety) – a project in partnership with LIC (Living in Community). Living in Community works to balance perspectives on Vancouver’s sex industry and help promote knowledge/education and create awareness around the issue of street level sex work in Vancouver. Recently, Matthew has completed the Community Counseling Skills Certificate Program at Vancouver Community College and is currently completing a work site practicum at PEERS Vancouver. Matthew hopes to continue his studies in the fall with the new advanced certificate program at VCC that focuses on concurrent disorders in the counseling field of addiction.
Currently HUSTLE has three part-time community outreach workers who provide harm reduction, nutrition and hygiene products as well as references to resources such as housing, detox and medical services upon request. The HUSTLE outreach team works late night evening weekends in the Down Town South area of Vancouver as well as engaging clients at various drop-in and dinner programs in community.
HUSTLE currently runs the Experiential Youth Mentor ship Program (EYMP) whose pilot project has been funded by the Youth Philanthropy Council (YPC) of the Vancouver Foundation. The youth worker is currently being mentored in the process of traditional on-street outreach and in the method and motivation of the health promotion and harm reduction model of front line service and support. This continues to be an extremely rewarding experience as the youth worker has the opportunity to gain empowerment by using their voice and experience to relate to peer clients and give back to community. Simply put, relationship building is of primary importance to supporting HUSTLE clients with youth responding well to the care and concern shown by other youth who, in turn, act as valuable role models when helping to improve the overall health and safety of the HUSTLE clients.
Recently, HUSTLE was approved for additional program funding and hired a male support worker who is currently being trained in an outreach capacity in order to build relationships with the HUSTLE clients (primarily male and Trans). The support worker also co-facilitates the new HUSTLE ‘N’ FLOW support group with the Program Director and brings with him experience in peer mentor ship with the Matrix Program at VCH. The Matrix program is a series of workshops and support groups that focus on a model of treatment for gay men who are in the process of early recovery for addiction to Crystal Methamphetamine. The support worker has also begun the Basic Counseling program at VCC and looks forward to learning valuable skills that he can apply directly to his work with HUSTLE supports and services.
Community Steering Committee:
HUSTLE is supported by a steering committee that ensures this program
remains accountable to community that it supports. Membership of committee is based on diverse perspectives with relevant knowledge and experience as it pertains to the sex industry. At least one current male sex worker sits on the committee to share relevant voice and experience as well as a Youth Advisory position to assist in the process of development and implementation for HUSTLE supports and services within community. Members of this group have been chosen by HUSTLE Program Director based on their lived and/or related experience in the sex industry both as service providers and/or active workers and serve for a one year term.
Steering Committee 2008/2009:
Dr. Susan McIntyre
Staff Professional development Training:
HUSTLE is involved in ongoing orientation and training of that includes theoretical training (research documents, toolkits and professional development), and practical (role playing and critical thinking exercises). While much of the training is hands-on through experience and weekly staff debriefing, HUSTLE also actively participates in community peer lead and driven training workshops such as conflict resolution, up to date First Aid seminars and various team building retreats and workshops. Safety training which is offered by such organizations as PACE Society, in collaboration with the VPD, is also an important ongoing process for the HUSTLE team, dealing with such topics as intuition, cues to assault, de-escalation and personal triggers.
HUSTLE Program director is also involved in ongoing professional development training that includes financial fitness workshops geared towards budget and non-profit sustainability and the creation and maintenance of ethical codes and policy/procedures. Other important training /workshops include media messaging development, ongoing safety training, community collaboration forums and other partnership and team building seminars on a monthly basis.
Additional ongoing training includes:
Safe Online Outreach (SOLOS) – Brainstorm/collaboration with several youth based organizations on the 5W’s of exploitation of youth online. HUSTLE is now an active member of a Facebook working group to develop policy and procedure around ethical online outreach for youth.
Frontline Worker Safety Training (PACE Society) – Workshops on triggers, PTSD, intuition grounding and self-care. Self -Defense training workshop – conflict resolution and de-escalation techniques both theory and practical application (VPD).
SHARP ACCESS Training – Working with Trans/LGB clients in a residential/outreach setting.
ULEAD – Conflict resolution workshop and First Aid level I CPR training and certification.
Falling Through Cracks - Youth Outreach team involved in ADM Sexual Exploitation of Youth video documentary – HUSTLE/EYMP featured
Organizational and Resource Materials:
ü Business cards have been designed, printed and are currently in circulation;
ü HUSTLE brochure designed/printed and currently in circulation;
ü Online advertising with services posted on Craig’s List, Used Vancouver, Redbook online;
ü HUSTLE currently has a group page that lists services and supports as well as an online profile page for outreach that gives program participants a space to connect and build community with each other.
Outreach Training Manual:
Over the past year, HUSTLE has been developing an orientation/training manual specific to outreach staff and workers who offer services to the population of street involved youth as well as survival male/trans sex workers in Vancouver communities. Areas of concentration include ; realities that face exploited youth and male sex workers on street i.e. shame and stigmatization, boundaries, diversity, venues and nature of the business as well as codes of conduct, harm reduction approach. Each section contains real life case scenarios of some of the more common situations that the outreach teams may encounter as well as possible courses of action and best practices for each case.
Referrals for HUSTLE outreach services are typically self-made by the clients themselves who will request various supports and services on a personal in the moment needs basis such as needle exchange, harm reduction supplies and/or community resources such as detox information, medical assistance and accompaniment. Outside of regular outreach days and times, clients can leave voice and text messages for outreach workers which are retrieved on a daily basis along with follow-up if and when appropriate.
Appointments for the emerging client base can be made with the Program Director/Support Worker during the week and often deal with follow through supports for clients. Referrals are taken from most any/all support organizations as well as the growing number of community partners within Vancouver.
The HUSTLE ‘N’ FLOW support groups are open to any male survival sex workers (current/former) as well as those who identify as male. These groups offer the men a safe space in a friendly environment where guys can come together and share their experiences, stories and challenges with each other in a respectful and non-judgmental manner. The maximum number of participants for each group is eight and so entrance is on a first come, first serve basis. Hopefully, as the group gains momentum and a certain street credibility, additional days/times and locations can be added to best accommodate those men who are interested in participation on an ongoing basis.
Below is a partial list of HUSTLE partnerships and allies within Vancouver communities.
ü B.C Coalition of Experiential Communities (BCCEC): The BCCEC is a collaboration that includes individuals in and from the sex industry inclusive of gender and sexual identity and who work toward human rights and social justice issues. HUSTLE membership on the BCCEC offers mentoring, support and debriefing; training on outreach and support service delivery, peer counseling, ethical information collection as well as personal /organizational development and capacity building.
ü B.C Coalition of Experiential Men: It is the mandate of the BCCEM to provide supports among male sex workers, thus working towards the inclusion of the male voice and experience in the sex industry. To value, embrace and utilize the authentic experiential knowledge and skills of men in the sex industry as a vehicle towards change. HUSTLE: Men on the Move was founded by experiential men and officially began providing community based services in May of 2007. It is the first initiative supported by the BCCEM that aims to design and implement outreach and support programs to male sex workers geared towards the inclusion of the male voice and experience.
ü PEERS Vancouver Resource Society: PEERS Vancouver Resource Society is a non profit organization established by former sex workers and their community supporters. As an organization PEERS seeks to improve the lives of current and former sex workers inclusive of gender and sexual identity by promoting and enabling an exit and recovery from sex work involvement. HUSTLE is the first male/youth program component of PEERS Vancouver. HUSTLE and PEERS share knowledge, experiences, resources and best practices as they relate to supporting sex workers in community. PEERS Vancouver also provides a valuable support and mentor ship role to HUSTLE by assisting in financial management and organizational development of the HUSTLE program.
ü Prostitution Alternatives, Counseling, Education Resource Society (PACE): By, with, and for sex workers – PACE Society promotes safer working conditions by reducing harm and isolation through education and support of individuals inclusive of gender and sexual identity who are involved in the sex industry. Pace believe that sex workers are valuable members of our community and are entitled to the same rights as all other human beings. HUSTLE and PACE work in collaboration to provide support along the continuum of sex the sex industry. HUSTLE Program Director is currently Vice-Chair of the PACE Board of Directors representing the male voice and bringing knowledge and expertise of male sex worker experience to the table.
ü Boys ‘R’ Us (Vancouver Coastal Health): BRU is a weekly drop-in centre for male/Trans sex workers serving Vancouver’s Downtown South community. Offers a safe and confidential space for connecting with others including social activities such as dinner and movies. Also helps individuals to access resources such as health care, housing and other community services. Boys’R’Us is a joint project of VCH and AIDS Vancouver. BRU provides ‘HUSTLE’ opportunities to build community and relationships with the male/Trans participants who access services. Together, BRU and HUSTLE work in collaboration to provide support to the population of male/trans clients that they share on a weekly basis.
ü Sex Industry Worker Safety Action Group (SIWSAG):T he Sex Industry Worker Safety Action Group (SIWSAG) was created in 2007 to bring together local police, sex industry workers, representatives from service-provision agencies and other community stakeholders to address the increasingly conditions relating to the safety of sex industry workers in Vancouver. HUSTLE represents the inclusion of the voice and experience of men/Trans involved in sex work at this table. HUSTLE is actively involved with the Red Light Alert RLA sheet (bad date reporting) and the Impact of the 2010 Olympic Games subcommittees.
ü Vancouver Police Department (VPD, VICE, Sex Industry Worker Liaison): HUSTLE works closely with the VPD to ensure the health, safety and respect of our clients and communities impacted by sex work and street life in Vancouver. HUSTLE is actively involved in integrated case management and planning with the sex worker liaison officer for those clients who are in need of assistance and support for issues that my pertain to legal/enforcement.
ü Women’s Information Safe Haven (WISH): WISH believes in the inherent value and dignity of all women and seeks to empower and support women in making free and positive choices. WISH also believes in making visible the issues facing women working in survival sex. HUSTLE collaborates with WISH staff to share resources and best practices I.E RED LIGHT ALERT SHEET. WISH is also responsible for providing on-going space and support for HUSTLE Steering Committee preparation and meetings.
ü WATARI Youth and Family services Hard Target Program: The Hard Targeting Program includes front line youth outreach workers, housing reps, detox/treatment liaisons, enforcement officers, A/d youth counselors. Group continues to be a community based response/support to high risk and street involved youth by providing integrated case management for the front line youth workers and service providers in community who are attempting to serve this population. HUSTLE engages in weekly meetings with other front-line support staff and service providers to connect in a confidential setting to strategize around providing support and ‘wrap around’ services to youth most at risk in Vancouver communities. HUSTLE works closely with other youth outreach programs that sit at this table - Covenant House, Unya, Onyx, I-Rayl, Roving Leaders , DEYAS etc.
ü Family Services of Greater Vancouver – Directions Youth Services Centre (Dusk til Dawn) provides Vancouver’s homeless youth and youth at-risk with a single entry point to access the tools, support and guidance they so desperately need to go about making healthy, positive changes in their lives. Directions strives to be accessible to all youth, regardless of their circumstances and foster a culture of respect. Directions also work closely with the community to develop solutions to end youth homelessness in Vancouver and to change the community’s perception of street-involved youth. Weekly check-in and engagement with both staff and youth. HUSLTLE and Directions engage in one on one peer support and harm reduction with ongoing relationship building. HUSTLE also provides weekly check-in and engagement with both staff and youth at Directions for wrap around services. Directions also provides HUSTLE with a satellite office for the purposes of housing the outreach team and supplies on a weekly basis.
ü B.C Society for Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse (BCSMSSA): A non-profit society, established to provide therapeutic services for males who have been sexually abused at some time in their lives. HUSTLE and BCSMSSA are community partners who share knowledge, resources and best practices as well making referrals to both programs.
ü ARA Mental Health (Action/Research/Advocacy): ARA works collaboratively with existing organizations and agencies to ensure the quality of life and overall well being of persons who present with various concurrent disorders and mental health concerns. HUSTLE collaborates with ARA staff to share resources and best practices and to provide effective referrals and wrap-around services within community when applicable or upon request. Many of our clients are participants both of HUSTLE and ARA simultaneously and share knowledge and resources as they transition to healthier lifestyles. Referrals are made upon request.
ü Vancouver Area Matrix Program (VAMP): The MATRIX program provides intensive day/evening crystal meth treatment for gay men and youth, including those who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, or two-spirited. HUSTLE actively engages in making referrals to the MATRIX program as well as accepting clients who need ongoing support before, during and after the 16 week program.
ü Youth CO Aids Society: YouthCO is Canada’s first youth-driven organization leading the HIV and Hep C movement through peer education, support, and shared leadership. HUSTLE and Youth CO share knowledge and best practices with respect to youth/peer mentor ship programming and initiative as well as providing wrap around services for clients who utilize both services and outreach on a regular basis.
ü Health Initiative for Men (H.I.M): Health Initiative for Men (HIM) is a new community organization based in Vancouver. HIM works with community to strengthen the health and well-being of gay men with a focus on tapping into the skills, experience, and creativity of every man looking to contribute. HUSTLE works on various projects associated with the newly formed HIM initiative and is actively engaged in making referrals for our male street youth and sex worker participants seeking a unique and innovative way to take a more proactive interest in their own health and welfare.
ü Living In Community (LIC): Living in Community is an ongoing city-wide project whose goal is to develop an integrated approach in relation to the impacts of sex work on neighbourhoods throughout Vancouver. The project aims to increase the health and safety of all community members, including sex workers, residents and business owners and operators. Living in Community is a collaboration of community, business and government organizations, including sex worker organizations, neighbourhood houses, youth and Aboriginal organizations, community policing centres, business improvement associations, the City of Vancouver, Vancouver Police Department, Vancouver Coastal Health Authority and the Vancouver Agreement. HUSTLE sits on the LIC steering committee and provides a valuable youth/male perspective on sexual exploitation as well as realities that male/trans survival sex workers face on the streets of Vancouver.
ü Vancouver Incest and Sexual Abuse Centre (VISAC): VISAC is a program of Family Services of Greater Vancouver who offer a variety of services to children, youth and adults who have experienced sexual abuse and/or childhood trauma. HUSTLE engaged referral process with VISAC and is set to provide some training and assistance with resource materials for youth and men.
HUSTLE Activities 2008/2009:
Main activities/Time line
October – December 2008
Ø Engaged in re-staffing of program to include process of interviewing and hiring for positions;
Ø Created job descriptions and contracts;
Ø Established priority hours of operation;
Ø Developed program and staff scheduling for office and outreach (weekly);
Ø Initiated ongoing staff training/orientation and weekly staff meetings and debriefing;
Ø Worked with partners to establish professional development opportunities and debriefing supports for Outreach/Support workers;
Ø HUSTLE formally begins the Experiential Youth Mentorship Program(EYMP) and hires first youth outreach worker and training commences;
Ø Presented workshop to peer facilitators for the Sharp access project (housing) of prisim drug/alcohol services;
Ø Gave follow-up interview of the HUSTLE Program and progress on the past year, growth, expansion and vision of services;
January – March 2009
Ø HUSTLE receives additional private donor funding to expand and develop programs specific to survival male sex workers – support groups, male support worker and life skills workshops;
Ø HUSTLE Steering Committee resumes meetings and welcomes new membership;
Ø HUSTLE joins Living In Community (LIC) steering Committee;
Ø HUSTLE hires male support worker to assist with outreach and help facilitate male support groups;
Ø PEERS holds AGM. HUSTLE speaks with Sue McIntyre around some personal history and HUSTLE program development;
Ø Hire external evaluator(s) same as from phase I;
Ø Designed Program evaluation phase II;
Ø Evaluator(s) engaged in final evaluation phase II;
Ø Disseminated Program evaluation Phase II;;
Ø Ongoing outreach and support services in community;
Ø HUSTLE relocates outreach supplies and office to Directions Youth Drop in Centre;
Ø Outreach Team Continued to amend outreach map to accommodate and modify;
Ø the venues that exploited youth/male hustlers frequent;
Ø Document partnerships, outreach/support activities and insights;
April – July 2009 Evaluation/Follow-up
Ø Program Director nominated for Community Hero of the Year award (Xtra West) for his work with HUSTLE;
Ø YPC launches Youth Vital Signs Report Card – Hustle Program Featured / team attends the opening party;
Ø Megaphone Vancouver Street paper publishes front page article featuring the HUSTLE Program supports and services;
Ø PEERS Vancouver given Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) Grant. Together with Working Title Productions, HUSTLE (EYMP) is featured in a documentary around prevention, Education and Awareness of Sexual exploitation of Youth;
Ø HUSTLE increases schedule to 3 nights per week outreach in order to meet the needs of participants for the busy summer months ahead;
Ø Program Director engages in staff evaluations;
Ø Develop program final report based on findings and data collected;
Ø Share report with all necessary stakeholders, policy makers and funding bodies (both current and prospective).
Program Evaluation Process
In order to ensure that the HUSTLE Program is maintaining accountability and is indeed meeting the needs of the client population that it serves, an comprehensive evaluation process is built into the program that directly involves participant voices and experiences in the ongoing development of the program. The goal of the program evaluation is to increase our working knowledge about the experiences of Men/Trans in the sex industry as well as street involved youth who may be at risk of exploitation. Further, we aim to apply this data to shape and customize our outreach services and to add to existing knowledge in this area.
These goals are achieved through offering opportunities for Male/Trans/Youth voices and experiences in the sex industry and on the street to be recorded and shared with the public who remain largely unaware of the issues that men in the industry face on a daily basis.
Initial data collection included:
ü Location of Contact: Time of Day, new or Repeat contact
ü Demographics: Information voluntarily provided by contact I.E age, street name, alias, hometown, time in sex industry;
ü Type of services requested: Peer counseling, referral, accompaniment, supplies;
ü Type of supports provided: Peer counseling, referral, accompaniment, supplies as well as information on supports that were requested but not available or not provided in a timely fashion;
ü Details on follow up or outcome of interaction
ü Quantitative Data: numbers and descriptions of supplies provided to recipients
This program has engaged in two phases of program evaluations and hired two external evaluators, one of whom served as a mentor to the other who was experiential and new to the evaluation process. Evaluators were briefed in interviewing skills, research principles and documentation. Evaluators obtained the informed consent of participants and conducted one on one interviews with active and former male and Trans workers as well as street involved youth, exploring accessibility, relevance and efficiency of HUSTLE outreach and support services.
Some areas of Inquiry included:
ü How did the participant hear about the HUSTLE: Men on the Move program;
ü What was their experience with staff of program;
ü What services did recipients request/ what was provided/what was not;
ü Map or locations visited by outreach: are they adequate;
ü Adequacy of hours of operation;
ü Would they refer or recommend this service to a friend/other young men;
ü What aspects of the service would they like to see changed or improved;
ü Are the supplies carried by Outreach workers adequate;
ü What additional referral information or support would be required;
ü Other comments and concerns.
In the phase II HUSTLE evaluation, there were an additional 16 questions asked of adult participants only. This section focused on bad date reporting and the current Red Light Alert Sheet. The goal was to assess the level and frequency of violence as a result of bad dates among male/trans survival sex workers. Questions in this section also focused on their experiences of the effectiveness of current reporting, barriers to reporting, method/motivations for reporting (do they report, if so how often and if not, why?) as well as their perceptions and feedback on the design/dissemination of the current RLA report.
The youth survey was reformulated, specifically with regard to questions relating to sex work. This was done in order to reflect the legal fact that any youth under 19yrs of age who trades sexual activities for resources such as money, food, drugs, shelter, transportation and similar things, is considered ’sexually exploited’. Questions were worded to appropriately reflect the experiences of youth, but also with a mind towards minimizing the potential for triggering a negative emotional response from a participant.
Interviews took place in a location of the participant’s choice over a three-week period. Locations included coffee shops during the daytime hours and community organizations during hours of operation. Participants were paid an honorarium for their contribution from the onset of the interview in order to preserve their rights to withdraw consent without penalty and to appropriately compensate them for their time. Data collected was compiled by the Project Consultant for each phase of the evaluation and can be viewed on the PEERS Vancouver Web site at www.peersvancouver.org and the BCCEC Web site at www.bccec.wordpress.com. (see attached evaluation report)
ü Continued growth and expansion of HUSTLE supports and services within community according to needs and recommendations outlined in evaluation;
ü Explore HUSTLE housing initiative and opportunities for zero-barriered housing for survival male sex workers;
ü Continue and expand Experiential Youth Mentorship Program (EYMP);
ü Incorporate RLA data collected in 2008/2209 evaluation into existing Red Light Alert developed by the BCCEC and distributed by WISH.
ü Continue to develop an orientation/training manual specific to outreach staff and workers who offer services to the population of male/trans sex workers and street involved youth in Vancouver communities.
ü Complete grant application for refunding with current funding body
ü Continue to diversify and apply for future project funding