You gave a clear, relevant, and practical information about the nature of human trafficking and counseling, realistic examples, evidence based interventions/treatments, and resources for further study. We are especially grateful that you could customize your presentation with attention to both clinical mental health and school counseling students who will work with client/students across the life span in various settings.
As we expected, many students let us know they enjoyed your presentation. They mentioned that it was highly informative, well delivered, engaging, and a critical part of their training. And, thank you for sharing your materials so generously.
We appreciate your expertise, enthusiasm, and generosity of your time and talent. We hope that you will come back when we do this again next year. - Russell A. Sabella, Ph.D and Ann Tilman, Ed.D., Florida Gulf Coast University College of Health Professions and Social Work, Fort Myers, FL
I have found Julie
to be a woman of high intelligence and
her non profit organization Beauty from Ashes™ does outstanding work in combating human trafficking. Her outreach and knowledge about the needs of trafficked victims is so valuable to protecting and restoring them. I wanted to take this opportunity to highlight them.
We spent several days working together and even though we have never met face to face she and our team worked seamlessly and our communication was consistent and clear amid a very chaotic situation. The victim trusted her deeply and she was unwavering in her desire to reach Beauty from Ashes for help. Julie’s skills were a key part of what enabled this victim reach safety. It takes a professional to accomplish this and I want to commend Julie on her skills as a professional and her knowledge of how to collaborate in a team effort. I am happy to have worked with her and will look forward to doing so again soon. - Dottie Laster, MA, Laster Global Consulting, Human Trafficking Training and Consulting, Texas
[Julie's] extensive educational background and years of experience in working with victims of trafficking gave the audience excellent insight about this growing problem. The additional videos [she] presented showing real victims and outcomes added a lot to the presentation. [Julie's] extensive research for the presentation, including specific healthcare provider interventions, was excellent. - Michele Savage RN, BSN, MPH, Community Health Continuing Education Lee County Health Department, Fort Myers, FL
Julie was our keynote speaker as well as workshop presenter at True Beauty . . . where she spoke to girls between the ages of nine and 18 years old . . . she spoke to the girls about what true beauty is, versus the messages from the media, where true beauty comes from, and encouraged girls to celebrate who they are as the unique and beautiful individual they were created to be. During her worship presentations she spoke to girls about goal-setting: how, why, and inspired girls to reach for their dreams and make them a reality.
Julie led a workshop at the Girls Protecting Girls event, for girls between 6th and 12th grade and parents and adults in our community. Julie shared valuable insight with young girls on the warning signs and red flags to watch for in relationships and predators from the human trafficking industry. She created beautiful handouts highlighting the important signs and red flags with information on who to contact with questions and seek out help from should a girl recognize those signs in her relationship(s) or in another.
Julie is always professional, friendly, and caring in her approach to presenting and interacting with the girls she is working with. Her passion for helping others and the joy she receives from doing so is evident in all she does. Her presentations: materials, preparation, and physical presentation are always of excellent quality and captivating to her audiences.
It has been a joy to know and work with Julie to serve the girls in our community together. I appreciate her work individually and collectively in "building girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place." - Ann-Marie Matthews, Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida
Julie is an excellent example of a person dedicated and loyal to her job while attending Florida Gulf Coast University while maintaining a high degree of academic excellence. This is not an easy accomplishment. I am well aware of the pressure and stress placed on adult students attempting to balance their personal life, academic life and business life. Julie has been extremely successful in all these areas. Julie's work ethic, decisiveness and wealth of experience working harmoniously with many types of people, uniquely qualifies her as an exceptional individual the would be an asset to any business, organization, or university.
Julie has certainly displayed leadership, scholarship and provided a tremendous service to her community. Many individuals have seen their lives become enriched and changed forever by Julie's work. - Charles F. Bell, Ed. D, Associate Dean, Barry University, Fort Myers, FL
Julie is very concerned about her academic performance and spends a great deal of time studying and preparing for school. More important to me is the time she spends working to make her practice better for the clients she serves. Julie shows insight, caring and compassion, while holding her client accountable to the work themselves towards their goals. - Myrna J. Molinari, MSW, LCSW, CAP, Director of Social Services, The Salvation Army, Fort Myers, FL
I had Julie in courses for her first four semesters in the program [Mental Health Counseling Master's degree] and have watched her quick intelligence and passion for our field and her selected population blossom. She represents the very best of what we hope for our students and eventual practicing professionals . . . Julie is a scholar . . . maintaining a 4.0 GPA . . . Julie is a leader . . . She established a program, her personal passion and mission, Beauty From Ashes™, to assist victims of human trafficking and raise awareness of trafficking and exploitation of those who work in sex trades. In seven years the organization has grown, and become more professionalized and expanded its reach to state and national impact due to Julie's leadership and dedication. - Madelyn L. Isaacs, Ph.D., Florida Gulf Coast University, Fort Myers, FL
Julie is a woman of high intelligence and integrity. Her perseverance,
consistent effort and productivity is remarkable in spite of the great
difficulties and complications of her work. She has a high level of
organizational and leadership skills. Julie has shown herself to be
willing to do the tough work needed to get the job done. I encourage
support of this ministry. - Dr. Barbara A. Maybee, MSW, LCSW, Fort
Julie is a passionate, tireless, and dedicated worker who
seeks to rescue and restore victims of the same crime that she herself once
endured. She is known not
just in the state of Florida but throughout the world for her tireless work to
rescue and restore these victims of domestic human trafficking.
Julie and BFA are doing an excellent job—in the face of
overwhelming odds—to help victims of human trafficking and to address the
statewide and nationwide crisis of domestic human trafficking. This is a particularly dire crisis in
the state of Florida because of (1) the high number of young people—US
citizens—who are trafficked and (2) the low number of beds available for
them. Every counselor who works
with trafficking victims will attest that these victims have unique problems
because of the horror they have endured—and that they cannot be put into the
same facilities as victims, for example, of domestic violence. Right now there is only one five-bed
facility in the entire state of Florida.
These victims need specialized housing, medical and dental attention,
mental health care services, education, and training in vocational activities.
That is what Julie’s project proposes to do—and I recommend your endorsement of
it. I strongly support her efforts and the comprehensive project she has
proposed—and I urge your support also. - Diana Scimone, President, Born to Fly International, Orlando, FL
the ability to speak with passion, clarity & wisdom while
captivating an audience and delivering a powerful message of freedom,
redemption, hope and Truth. - Michelle Truax, Event Coordinator, Fireproof Ministries & Founder of Partners for Purity, Atlanta, GA
Julie Shematz brings her passion for Christ...matched with her
compassion for people to the ministry of Beauty From Ashes. Solidly
grounded in the Word of God, Julie presents the gospel of Christ with
grace and truth. She's reaching people that many of us never
could....all to the glory of Christ.
Julie served on staff @ Sanibel Community Church as their full time
bookkeeper & executive assistant for 2 1/2 years, prior to
resigning to pursue BFA & her art career as full time ministry. - Dr. Daryl Donovan, Senior Pastor, Sanibel Community Church, Sanibel, FL
I would highly recommend having Julie speak at any type of event or
media opportunity that involves the sex industry. She has been a guest
on my TV program numerous times over the past several years, and each
time, has openly shared her life's experiences that connected with
those in the audiences who had any type of association with the adult
industry. Julie loves the Lord and her only real desire is to see those
in & affected by the sex industry freed from bondage by the power
of God. She comes with no agenda, other than to serve the Lord. - Evangelist Bill Keller, Founder & Executive Director of Live Prayer, Tampa, FL
As Julie Shematz’s
Senior Pastor I have witnessed the impact of the call on her life and
the lives of many others. Julie goes into the trenches to bring hope
and eternal life from Jesus Christ to the precious pearls of many
caught in the web of the adult entertainment industry. Both men and
women in this industry are being brought into the truth with restored
lives. Her heart and compassion is truly from the heart of the Father.
- Gaspar Anastasi, Senior Pastor, Word of Life World Outreach Center, Fort Myers, FL
Chairperson for the Lee County Sheriff s Human Trafficking Task Force, I
strongly urge you to support Julie Shematz as she seeks funding for her
organization Beauty From Ashes. Her proposal, Sex Trafficking
Restoration ~ FREEdom™ Project addresses a statewide and nation wide
crisis of domestic human trafficking. The average age of young people
being forced into the sex industry is 13. There is a dire need for
specialized restoration homes for these young people as they are rescued
and need services. Only 50 beds nation wide have been identified for
such purposes, and only one five bed facility is found in Florida.
Julie has proposed a comprehensive project which addresses the long
term, short term, emergency and special needs of these individuals. This
critical help includes medical, dental, mental health care services,
vocational training, college training, and housing assistance. As the
founder of Beauty From Ashes, Julie Shematz has proven herself to be a
leader in the field of restoration from Domestic Human Trafficking. I
commend her dedication and persistence to this cause, and support her
with the confidence that she will succeed. - Mary Lewis LCSW, Lee County
Task Force Chair, Florida
demonstrated that her passion to see hurting people set free is equally
matched by her integrity and faithful leadership. She is a gifted
communicator, eloquently expressing the truth in God's word in a way
that is wrapped in love and compassion. Julie is truly a vessel and her
life is a testimony of God's undying grace for His people. - Harmony
Dust, Founder & Executive Director of Treasures Out of Darkness, Los