A Nova Scotia victim of human sex trafficking is being remembered with a bursary in her name that aims to help survivors.
The Maddison Fraser Bursary was announced this week in London, Ont., by the London Abused Women's Centre and the London Police Association. The $2,000 annual bursary will be given each January to a survivor of human sex trafficking.
"To think that Maddison is going to be honoured every single year in a city that far away from here is just awesome, I love it," said Jennifer Holleman, Maddison's mother.
Holleman told CBC News last year her daughter was lured from Yarmouth, N.S., to Alberta by violent pimps when she was 19.
Maddison died in 2015 after a car crash in Edmonton. She was 21.
Holleman was flown to London for the centre's Shine the Light on Women Abuse Campaign. She said the bursary announcement was a complete surprise.
"I've lost my child to prostitution, it's really a hard pill to swallow and it's been very difficult," Holleman said.
"But now things are changing so much and now she's going to be more so remembered as a face of change. ... With this bursary, that makes it even that much more real."
Money helping survivors
Money for the bursary is coming from the London Police Association.
"Police officers see how difficult it is for trafficked women and girls to leave," said Megan Walker, the centre's executive director. "They see how controlled they are, and the level of violence experienced not only by their pimps but by sex purchasers.
"They wanted to do something that would make a difference in somebody's life."
Positive way to be remembered
Walker said the organization is always trying to help families find positive ways their children can be remembered.
"Maddison's story is really compelling," she said. "She was a two-time Canadian boxing champion, a mom of a very young girl when she was killed, and it just really resonated with the police association."
Walker said the bursary will help find housing for trafficked women, as well as rehab, job training and education.
"Really just to help those women and girls re-establish their lives," she said.
Walker said Maddison's story hit a nerve.
She first heard it when she was invited by the Tri-County Women's Centre to speak at a conference two years ago in Yarmouth. Holleman was also speaking at the conference.
"She shared her story about Maddison and it really impacted me, like all of these stories do. So I went up to her after and asked if she would consider allowing us to honour Maddison."
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