When you think of little kids, you probably imagine them swinging on a swing set or playing with friends, not walking the streets of a major city, selling their bodies for sex.
"It was kind of getting hard on the streets so I met somebody and that's when I started prostituting," said Tatianna.
Those words are hard enough to hear coming from a grown woman, let alone a young girl. Tatianna started prostituting when she was just 16 years old.
"One day I just got caught up and got arrested and they sent me back to Arizona where most of my family resides and they sent me to Streetlight," she said.
Streetlight USA is a nonprofit aimed at stopping child prostitution. The organization helps girls between 11 and 18 years old escape the streets and start their lives.
"I am 16 years young and I've been here for seven months," said Renee.
Renee and Tatianna just graduated from Streetlight's program. They said they both know how crucial it was to saving their lives. CBS 5 News chose not to reveal their full names because of what they've been through.
"If I didn't do it sooner I was going to be six feet under the ground and I didn't want to live my life that way anymore," Renee said.
"I would probably still be on the street prostituting. I probably wouldn't be alive, honestly," said Tatianna.
Now the girls can look toward the future.
"I'm going to go to college," Renee said.
"January is when I start college and I'm going to double major in business and psychology," Tatianna said.
Both teens are examples of what can be, taking girls off the streets and out of the terrifying world of child sex trafficking and putting them on track for the future every little girl deserves. It's a future filled with hope and dreams.
"I could prove my family members that they're wrong. That I'm a better person," Renee said.
It's a future that allows them to inspire others.
"You have to go through struggles to get your accomplishments. There can't be a rainbow without rain," Tatianna said.
Streetlight USA is funded completely by donations. If you'd like to help click here.
Copyright 2012 CBS 5 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Friday, May 24 2013 12:29 PM EDT2013-05-24 16:29:51 GMT
Every week, CBS 5 News is sent a list of restaurants that have been recently inspected by Maricopa County's Environmental Services Department. CBS 5 News selects five restaurants with some of the highestMore >
Every week, CBS 5 News is sent a list of restaurants that have been recently inspected by Maricopa County's Environmental Services Department.More >
Thursday, May 23 2013 11:43 AM EDT2013-05-23 15:43:24 GMT
Fallen officer's daughter graduates from kindergarten
Hundreds of Phoenix police officers showed their support for a fallen colleague by attending his daughter's kindergarten graduation in Anthem on Wednesday. Officer Daryl Raetz was killed in the lineMore >
Tatum Raetz, 5, graduated from kindergarten in Anthem Wednesday and hundreds of uniformed Phoenix police officers were there to show their support for the family.More >
Thursday, May 23 2013 12:39 PM EDT2013-05-23 16:39:28 GMT
Dan Marco's son was murdered in 2010. (Source: CBS 5 News)
Only people who have lost a close loved one can understand the pain of Travis Alexander's family"My heart goes out to them, because I understand," says Dan Marco, who's son Zachary was murdered in 2010.ZacharyMore >
Only people who have lost a close loved one can understand the pain of Travis Alexander's family.More >
Friday, May 24 2013 2:31 AM EDT2013-05-24 06:31:07 GMT
Jodi Arias (Source: CBS 5 News)
It is now in the hands of the 12 jurors to decide if Jodi Arias will live her life behind bars or if she'll be executed. The defense and prosecution gave their closing statement Tuesday afternoon andMore >
The judge has declared a mistrial in the penalty phase of the Jodi Arias trial. The jury announced late Thursday afternoon that they could not reach a unanimous decision on life or death for Arias.More >
Thursday, May 23 2013 1:33 PM EDT2013-05-23 17:33:26 GMT
Remember the Kmart's "Ship My Pants" ad? Well Kmart isn't finished with their controversial ads. The company launched their latest video about Big Gas Savings on Thursday. It even features the sameMore >
The company launched their latest video about "big gas savings" on Thursday.More >