Worldwide, more than two million children work in the sex industry. The physical and emotional damage to these children is huge. Girls are often still virgins when they meet their first customer. Within a few months many are infected with the HIV virus. The increase in the number of (child) sex tourists continues to compound the problem.
Terre des Hommes describes child prostitution as the sexual exploitation and abuse of the vulnerability and / or trust of a child for sexual purposes. This can be in exchange for money , clothes, food or any other promise. It can happen at home, in brothels, bars, massage parlours, but also remotely via the Internet. Because the word 'prostitution' implies that the parties are 'criminals', 'lawbreakers' or' providers of illegal acts' instead of being the victims, Terre des Hommes prefers to describe the phenomenon as "commercial sexual exploitation of children “ .
Child prostitution is a global phenomenon and occurs everywhere. In Asia just as many girls as boys are employed as street prostitutes. Child prostitution does not only occur in poor countries in Africa, Asia and South America, but there are also child victims in the Netherlands too.
Terre des Hommes runs programs against sexual exploitation of children in Asia, Africa and the Netherlands. We provide assistance to victims by providing shelter and therapy. Also through awareness raising, education, through investigation and prosecution of the perpetrators, we are committed to preventing child prostitution.