Terre des Hommes fights the many forms of sexual exploitation of children in partnership with the Dutch National Postcode Lottery (Nationale Postcode Loterij). While the circumstances of these children are reprehensible, their stories are unfortunately all too common. Terre des Hommes deems this unacceptable and exposes the problem through this series of photos taken by the photographer Corbino, which is the pseudonym of Maarten Corbijn.
In this photo series, photographer Corbino presents true stories, re-enacted by local actors. These actors literally give a face to the countless anonymous victims who do not dare or are unable to reveal themselves out of shame or fear for reprisals.
The exhibition can be seen here:
For Terre des Hommes, photographer Corbino – the pseudonym of Maarten Corbijn – took thirteen portraits that give a face to child sex tourism.
"You only really begin to grasp the extent of the problem when you are standing in the middle of a Filipino slum. That trip did not leave me unaffected. Making the series of portraits was a strange experience. You are taking photos that you would rather not take. This whole time, I was holding on to a single thought: I am actively participating in the fight against child sex tourism. While the children in the photos are the nephews, nieces, and acquaintances of staff members of Terre des Hommes, the stories depicted are real. I sometimes spoke to aid workers and victims before taking the pictures, making it very tangible.
I myself have three boys 9, 8, and 5 years of age, in addition to my oldest daughters (22 and 25). Just imagine that they would end up in a situation like those that are the subject of this exhibition. Horrible. In order to illustrate the sexual exploitation of children clearly and comprehensibly, we took photos that seem to be 'normal' situations at first glance: a boy with an ice cream, a girl in a hammock. Those photos seem to come straight out of a travel brochure. Yet, their message becomes clear as soon as you take a closer look. 'Why is that man giving that young boy an ice cream?' This reflects how all visitors to the exhibition are made aware of the issue."
Corbino working in Cambodia
Besides my eldest daughters (22 and 25) I have three sons of 9, 8 and 5 years old. Imagine Zelf heb ik naast mijn oudste dochters (22 en 25) nog drie jongens van 9, 8 en 5 jaar oud. Imagine if this situation was the norm. Terrible. In order to illustrate the sexual exploitation of children clearly and transparently, we have created images that at first sight appear to be 'normal': a boy with an ice cream, a girl on a hammock. The photographs look as though they are from a tourism catalogue. Nevertheless, as soon as you have a better look at the photographs, the message becomes clear. 'Why is that man giving the little boy an ice cream?' It shows how the exhibition can call the attention of the visitors."