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Victims of human trafficking were exposed to traumatic experiences that affected their physical, psychological, cognitive, and social health. As the survivors entered the healing stage and progressed in their journey to community reintegration, the complex traumatic experiences may affect their independence with occupational tasks. This capstone explored the areas where occupational therapy can assist with community reintegration for survivors of human trafficking. Interviews were conducted through casual conversation using the modified-COPM as guidance, and the QOL was used to gather baseline data. Survivors identified priorities of their everyday living and the barriers to them achieving their goals: education, vocation, transportation, health, leisure, and healthy relationships. The essential staff working with clients identified the same concerns as clients and concerns for the staff’s emotional and cognitive health due to emotional exposure to client trauma. A program was developed to guide survivors in vocation, education, physical health, and emotional health to promote independence and autonomy. A separate program was developed to guide staff into emotionally supportive conversations and encourage reflective program meetings to reduce the risk of compassion fatigue.

Publication Date

Summer 8-14-2020


University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences

Medical Subject Headings

Human Trafficking, Survivors, Mental Health, Vocational Education, Occupational Therapy, Compassion Fatigue


Occupational Therapy | Social Work


Poster presented at the Summer 2020 Virtual OTD Capstone Symposium at the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences on August 14, 2020.

Occupational Therapy’s Role in Assisting with Community Reintegration for Survivors of Human Trafficking