Diana Janz, the founder of Hope Ranch, has always wanted to build a home for hurt women. For years, this remained only an idea as Diana’s life took different--and at times painful--turns. But in April 2010, this dream began turning into something more tangible while she was working at a non-profit in downtown L.A. with survivors of sex trafficking. Diana realized that the huge task of preventing trafficking and caring for survivors in the US needed to happen in every town and city, and her vision became a lot more specific.

She soon returned to Eugene, Oregon where she had a supportive network of family and friends. Based on her work with survivors in California, Diana knew that trafficking survivors would be passing through the Eugene-Springfield area. However, she soon realized that the impact of trafficking in Lane County was even deeper and, tragically, more common than she initially thought. Facing this situation, Diana recalls, “During that first year, I literally was praying.” As she prayed, she began meeting with people who have been trafficked or who were working to end human trafficking.

Out of this year of preparation, Hope Ranch began to take shape: the mission and vision would be to provide safe support for survivors and a voice against human trafficking in Lane County--someday, it might include a ranch as well. A board formed in early 2011, and by June of that year, Hope Ranch Ministries was registered as a non-profit.

These days, Diana has a growing community of supporters who are raising awareness. She continues to be a safe harbor for young women passing through Eugene. In this work, she and others are raising hope already. She dreams of having a secluded property in the area where she can provide refuge for survivors.

But most of all, she continues to pray. As she reflects on the huge systemic problem of trafficking, the overwhelming details of this work, and the individual pain of survivors, she almost says that prayer is the foundation--but she quickly corrects herself: “God is the foundation,” she affirms. But Diana adds, “Prayer has to be next. It would be impossible to do this by myself.”

To join Hope Ranch’s effort to end human trafficking in Eugene-Springfield, see how you can get involved.