Street Ministry

The fight against human trafficking and sexual exploitation can be overwhelming. The method that we have chosen to encounter the problem head on is to build relationships with the victims and the people who are most vulnerable to it. Face of Justice is committed to going to the streets of downtown San José where we build relationships with the prostituted men, women and children there. Almost every other part of our ministry stems from taking 15 staff and volunteers to roam the streets of San José and serve coffee and cookies twice a week into the late hours of the night when our friends are on the streets the most. A hot cup of coffee, a good hug from a friend and a prayer from a powerful God is often all these men and women need to invite them out of the darkness in which they live.

Casa Ágape

As we encounter people in prostitution on the streets, we have between 5 and 20 minutes to have a conversation with them.  For most of them, the conversation with us and the prayer they receive is the only time they are consciously in the presence of God. Most are not comfortable walking into traditional churches, so we have a “street church” service that is open and inviting to anyone and everyone: people in prostitution, transvestites, homeless people, their families, kids, etc. Anyone can come and will be loved completely. With the help of local pastors, a local church, local worship leaders and local volunteers, we put on this service including worship, a short talk, and dinner together twice a month. The idea is to give them a longer opportunity to be submersed in the presence of God, and learn what it means to be a part of a community of believers who love one another sacrificially.

Men’s Bible Study

There is one park in San José with over 100 boys and men who prostitute themselves every night. Many of them are addicted to drugs or to the street culture or are homeless and haven’t been able to get out of prostitution for that reason. Our volunteer-led Bible Study meets at one of our staff members’ homes every Thursday night, encouraging the men in what true biblical manhood looks like and walking alongside them in order to help them in whatever decisions they make in that decision.

Prayer Vigils

There are two sides to trafficking and sexual exploitation just like in any other business: Supply and Demand. The supply, in this case, are the victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation with whom we work. However, the demand includes a network of men and women who pull the strings, kidnap children, exploit other men, women and children, own brothels and keep the network going. Once a month, we go in front of Costa Rica’s largest brothel which is located in San José, and we serve coffee and cookies to the men and women working as sex tour guides, taxi drivers for sex tourists, drug dealers, and the clients themselves. Our goal is to open a portal for the Holy Spirit to bring conviction to these men and woman through being a hint of light in a dark place. The way God works when we are available just to be a light in the darkness is incredible.

The average number of men, women and children in situations of trafficking, sexual exploitation or prostitution that we serve during the course of a week.

= 1 victim

La Sala

With the help of several contacts in the Red Light District, we have recently acquired a building that we have begun to use as a day-time refuge for women in prostitution there. Our main objectives there are:

  1. To create an escape from the tumultuous environment of the Red Light District, even if only for a cup of coffee, a prayer and a shower.
  2. To house the Free the Girls project (see below) and train women who are in prostitution skills and character qualities required to keep jobs, in order fro them to have the opportunity to leave prostitution.
  3. To be a refuge of hope within a community of darkness, and present the gospel to those who may never be in a place where they can hear it.

Free the Girls

Face of Justice is bringing Free the Girls job training program to Costa Rica to help victimized women and teen girls to start a new life for themselves by establishing their own micro-enterprise selling bras. Each woman is offered the initial inventory of bras to start her own small business in a local second-hand clothing market. Bras are considered a luxury and command the highest price of any second-hand clothing item. The program allows women to begin to leave the streets and avoid contact with men through the sale of bras.

Lip Gloss Project

We have found it very difficult to get close to women in the Red Light District. However, we have discovered a creative way to get phone numbers to and make a connection with women and girls who are working in the brothels of San José. We adhere a label with the country’s helpline on lipsticks, offering hope to those who are being forced to provide sexual services to live or pay off a debt. We give the lip gloss away as gifts. This puts valuable information into the hands of those who are most vulnerable to these crimes and offers them a way out.