I grew up in Alabama and as a child knew I wanted to help people. I would always tell my best friend Erica that one day I was going to create a foundation to help abused children.
My introduction to the world of exploitation came at the age of 17 when I became a lingerie model. I was still in high school but struggling financially to survive. I ended up dropping out of high school but did get my GED. On a visit to my older sister, who was working as a stripper in Atlanta, I was offered a job as a stripper. This was the next step in my life that exposed me to a larger world of exploitation.
Multiple scenarios started my process of transitioning out of the sex industry. The first was the death of my grandmother, Ruth. She was a strong woman in my life who I loved dearly. But when she died, I started asking myself, “What am I going to do with my life?”
The next turning point occurred during a drive home from working a night shift at the strip club. While in my car, I began to cry. I really did not like who I was or what I was becoming. I felt stuck in the adult entertainment industry but did not know how to stop living the way I was living.
I cried out to God that night and prayed for Him to save me from myself! I did not leave the club immediately but did meet my future husband a few weeks later. I told him that I felt God was telling me to go to church, so he invited me to his church in Conyers.
My husband grew up in church, but I did not. The first time I stepped into his church, I felt like they really cared about me. The pastor knew I was a stripper because his family had told him. But I did not feel judgement – only love from the entire congregation. They did not tell me to quit my job at the club; it was a decision I made over time.
After leaving a life of exploitation 17 years ago, I created an organization called 4Sarah, named after my daughter. 4Sarah reaches out to women and girls who are victims of sex trafficking or exploitation. 4Sarah also provides scholarship opportunities to women who want to obtain their high school diploma or continue their education. In 2018, 4Sarah opened a home for pregnant women or women with children that offers short term housing.
COVID has caused challenges with the women we serve. The need for emergency financial assistance has increased. 4Sarah has provided groceries and personal care items to women who requested help.
Individuals we serve are sometimes scared of attending church. It takes courage for women who have been exploited to walk into a church facility for the first time. It’s important to be patient and take time to fellowship with them and get to know the women and their children.
4Sarah is a faith-based nonprofit organization that believes in the power of prayer. 4Sarah wants to expand and assist more families in 2021. We have been praying for wisdom on how to truly help change the lives of the women we connect with daily.
Pray for our staff and volunteers, as the work we do is sometimes heartbreaking. Pray for women to find their purpose in God, better employment opportunities, and affordable housing for their families.
Kasey McLure is the founder of 4Sarah, a nonprofit faith based organization that empowers change in the life direction of women and girls working in the sex industry as a stripper, prostitute, escort, porn star, or victim of sex trafficking.