For many women on Guam who suffer from drug addiction, poverty, and disabilities, the options for a better life are often limited.
On Guam alone, there are hundreds of women that experience drug addictions, poverty, rape, and disabilities.
For these individuals, there are organizations like Oasis Empowerment Center. The Center’s mission is to help individuals overcome these adversities through trainings, housing and counseling.
The Oasis Empowerment Center was founded in 2004 as a faith based outreach of Elim Pacific Ministries and has been operating in East Agana.
The Oasis Empowerment Center is the only one of its kind and has seven different programs that target specific needs of women on Guam as well as the spiritual needs. Two of these programs are the Drug Rehabilitation and the Dream Project.
The Drug Rehabilitation program is for women who suffer from drug or alcohol addiction who seek help for themselves or who are appointed by the court to seek treatment. This three month program provides residential and outpatient counseling and treatments to help these individuals overcome these addictions and pursue a healthier lifestyle.
These women are often given the help needed to break free from these negative lifestyles. This program also provides spiritual counseling for women who are seeking guidance in their spiritual health.
Another program in Oasis Empowerment Center is the Dream Project, which is funded by the federal government through a grant. This program was designed to help women who have little to no income and have little knowledge of basic business and craft skill to develop micro enterprises and sustainable living abilities.
Pamela Flores, who was a case manager for the Dream Project said, “The intent of the grant is to help these women by giving them a temporary home for nine months.” “Many of these women were learning basic skills like how to balance a household budget, even how to turn on a computer,” Flores said. “Even communicating, we taught them what it would require to develop their own business through new healthy habits,”
The Oasis Empowerment Center is always looking for help from the public. Pauline Sablan who is one of the many active volunteers for the center states that working with the program has been a life changing experience. Sablan has been an active volunteer for the center for the past three years.
“It’s been an amazing experience volunteering here at the center. I am able to talk and pray with women who are in need,” Sablan said.
“There are so many ways to help other around you, all you have to do is get up and do it.” Sablan said.
The Oasis Empowerment Center also receives support through the donations as well as the profits made from the Hidden Treasure Thrift Store located at the Center. All items are given by donations and go towards funding the different programs in the center. “Whether it be your old clothes or even a small amount of your time, there are always ways to help these women in need,” Sablan said.