School of Behavioral Sciences
Doctor of Education in Community Care and Counseling (EdD)
Fred A. Milacci
Human Trafficking, Nonmetropolitan, Theory of Intentionality
Social and Behavioral Sciences
Thomas, Danielle Alexandra, "A Phenomenological Study Exploring the Lived Experiences of Professionals Supporting Minor-Aged Human Trafficking Survivors in Northeast Nonmetropolitan Communities" (2022). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 3805.
The purpose of this transcendental phenomenological study was to describe the experiences of professionals working with minor-aged survivors of human trafficking in nonmetropolitan environments throughout the Northeast. Husserl's noematic process, integrated with Maslow's theory of human motivation, provided this study's theoretical framework, which strived to answer the fol-lowing research questions: What are the experiences of professionals working with minor-aged human trafficking survivors in Northeast nonmetropolitan communities? and How do professionals describe their experiences helping minor-aged survivors of human trafficking obtain their basic needs after exploitation? Data collection involved demographic questionnaires and inter-views. The data was analyzed by using Moustakas' phenomenological methodology. Two primary themes emerged from the data analysis. The first theme was the participant's experience meeting the needs of survivors, containing subthemes of needs being met through their vocation and community resources. The second primary theme included the challenges participants experienced when meeting the survivors' needs; the subthemes contained the challenges they experienced through their vocation and community. The most prominent result was the differences in challenges experienced by participants depending if their employer was a nonprofit organization, or a state agency. These vocational discrepancies are imperative for ensuring that nonmetropolitan communities best understand how to provide services to minor-aged survivors of human trafficking.