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‘I can make a difference:’ Milwaukee sex trafficking survivor writes book about healing after trauma

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MILWAUKEE -- Wisconsin is a major hub for human trafficking, and in recent years, and a new tool is being used to raise awareness and help survivors heal.

Nancy Yarbrough-Banks broke free from the underground crime of human trafficking. She went from being a survivor to an advocate, and she's now an author.

"I know that I can make a difference," said Yarbrough-Banks. "The conversation needs to continue, but it needs to have action behind it."

As executive director of Fresh Start Learning Inc., she's been dedicated to creating social development programs and transforming lives. She's most recently been working with Project RETURN.

Nancy Yarbrough-Banks"These ladies come in from different areas of life, but one of the main focal points is recidivism," said Yarbrough-Banks.

Yarbrough-Banks has worked with at-risk youth, and she even started a seven-week pilot program.

"[The program] works primarily with those that have life interruptions, disruptions -- whether that may be exploitation, drug and alcohol abuse, domestic issues or just trying to get out of life traumas," said Yarbrough-Banks.

To help with that journey toward healing, she pulled from her own experiences. She wrote the book "The Exodus Where New Beginnings Happen." The book is being utilized as a tool in the programs.

"Something in them may resonate when they are reading," said Yarbrough-Banks. "It starts from the beginning of your first trauma, all the way until the end that you recognize it. The companion journal can help you process it your way."

Nancy Yarbrough-Banks

The book offers a reflective way to rehabilitate and provides hope that victims can re-write their own narratives.

"It can turn around whatever you are going through," said Yarbrough-Banks. "You can turn your tragedy you have into triumph. You can turn your pain into power."

To learn more about the book, click HERE. To schedule an appointment with Yarbrough-Banks, call 414-800-6269 or email

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