5 WPTV Local artist using art to heal human trafficking victims

Rosa says she was 12-years-old when she became a victim of human trafficking. It lasted 14 years.

"I worked as a maid, as a servant, I worked as a nanny, I worked on a farm in the fields, I worked as a prostitute," she said. 

She escaped, but that didn't end her pain. Her healing process included art therapy.

"What words cannot speak, you can always put on paper," Rosa added. 

That's what the "Catch The Wave Of Hope" founder is doing.

Artist Lynne Barletta is using her artistic talent to help victims of human trafficking and help heal horrible memories.

We discovered that we were able to use art as a vehicle to reach the heart of victims, and to bring healing and restoration.
— Lynne Barletta, Catch the Wave of Hope founder

She says "The art puts them in the right side of the brain so that when they are in that side where it's quiet, there's no noise, there's no talking, they are completely focused, they are really open to whatever download or teaching you are giving them."

The Treasure Coast artist says local leaders are finding new ways to help human trafficking victims.

"We are doing a huge mural so that we can bring awareness and also raise funds to build a home for trafficked children."

It's a need to help the hurting.

Barletta says, "A hundred children a day that we know of are being used in the nation for human trafficking. And 80 percent of human trafficking is human sex trafficking. The average age of girls is 12 to 13. The average age of boys is 11."

She's also raising funds to provide extensive therapy for the victims.