British-born Rachel Lloyd dropped out of school at 13 to support her single alcoholic mother. With little opportunity, she soon found herself spiraling into a life of torment and abuse as a sexually exploited girl. Vulnerable yet tough, Rachel broke free of the street and her pimp thanks to help of a local church. But that was just the beginning...Three years later, Rachel arrived in America as a missionary working with adult women in the sex industry. As she began to meet teenage girls who shared her experiences, she decided to found her own non profit,GEMS-Girls Educational and Mentoring Services- on her kitchen table to meet the needs of girls who were shunned by society. Along the way she earned her GED and won a full scholarship to college and a graduate program. Today, Lloyd is the founder and director of GEMS in Harlem, one of the most ground-breaking nonprofit organizations in the U.S. In stunning detail and with cinematic style, Lloyd tells her life story - a harrowing and inspirational tale of suffering, recovery, discovery, and nobility. She reveals the dark, secretive world of her past with clarity, understanding, humanity, and psychological insight. A fierce and passionate crusader, Lloyd explains the factors-including, addiction, abuse, poverty-that lead so many vulnerable young women into sexual exploitation. She explains the seduction of pimps and johns, the biases of cops, the racial stereotyping, the sexism of the courts. And she lovingly talks about her successes, sharing stories of her girls whose lives she has helped. It is these small victories which have healed her wounds and made her whole. Deeply moving, authentic and brave, "Girls Like Us" is a remarkable, deeply moving, and utterly unforgettable memoir.
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"Powerfully raw, deeply moving, and utterly authentic. Rachel Lloyd has turned a personal atrocity into triumph and is nothing less than a true hero. . . . Never again will you look at young girls on the street as one of 'those' women—you will only see little girls that are girls just like us." —Demi Moore, actress and activist
With the power and verity of First They Killed My Father and A Long Way Gone, Rachel Lloyd’s riveting survivor story is the true tale of her hard-won escape from the commercial sex industry and her bold founding of GEMS, New York City’s Girls Education and Mentoring Service, to help countless other young girls escape "the life." Lloyd’s unflinchingly honest memoir is a powerful and unforgettable story of inhuman abuse, enduring hope, and the promise of redemption.Review:
"Rachel Lloyd's astonishing stories of life on the street have an accumulative power that left me reeling. What makes "Girls Like Us" such an extraordinary achievement is that her storytelling is unflinchingly honest, and yet filled with a sense of promise, filled with a profound sense of hope."--Alex Kotlowitz, author of There Are No Children Here and The Other Side of the River
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Book Description Harper, 2011. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0061582050
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Book Description Harper, 2011. Book Condition: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service! Summary: With this moving new memoir, Rachel Lloyd takes her rightful place next to groundbreaking authors and activists like Dorothy Allison, Sapphire, and Jeannette Walls. I turned the last page feeling like Id just earned a Ph.D. in injustice, but also a profound and rare sense of hope. Bookseller Inventory # ABE_book_new_0061582050