“Community isn’t just a structure, it’s a bond.” ~ Heather Davis, Director of Development at Thistle Farms
Thistle Farms in Nashville, Tennessee knows how to practice radical hospitality – welcoming hundreds of women through their doors – without judgement, preconceptions or expectations – offering those who’ve survived prostitution, trafficking and addiction a two-year residential program of: housing, outreach, advocacy, education and on-job training in their own product manufacturing and retail facility.
“Community isn’t just a structure, it’s a bond.” says Heather Davis, Director of Development at Thistle Farms. The organization’s overarching mission to heal, empower and employ, is accomplished first and foremost by fostering a thriving community, which not only advocates for the women who avail themselves of the services provided, but creates real and enduringly successful bonds. Practicing radical hospitality makes positive change happen for the women who come to Thistle Farms, as well as the staff who welcome them.
"Together, we've gone through something remarkable, whether it’s adversity or healing. Tragedy and setbacks happen, but we simply hold onto one another during those times."
“What's unique about the Thistle Farms program is that it's a community of women who are helping each other heal. What I've learned from the community at Thistle Farms is resilience, and that strength comes from being vulnerable. I’ve also learned what generosity is…and this idea of welcoming the stranger - no matter who they are, or where they are – that loving them just as they are in that moment is what’s most important. Finally, creating a unique and diverse space lets everybody be celebrated and thrive!”
“The phrase here is "sisters for life" – it's truly more than a program, it's a community. It's not just the infrastructure that Thistle Farms provides that's keeping us together, it's the bonds of relationship that form. Together, we've gone through something remarkable, whether it’s adversity or healing. Tragedy and setbacks happen, but we simply hold onto one another during those times. Aura Cacia’s Positive Change Project supports Thistle Farms’ graduate services – designed for women after they graduate the program so that they may continue to access needed support. The result being that we continue to build community and celebrate life together!”