The complex nature and cultural stigma surrounding the abuse of boys have allowed it to go unnoticed by the general public. These projects seek to address the needs of exploited boys and young men, highlighting the empowerment, dignity, and self worth in their lives.
INDIA BOYS INTEGRATION & RESEARCH PROJECT:
This project is the first intervention to date specifically equipped to address child exploitation occurring within the population of male sex workers and malishwalas (male masseurs) in India’s metropolitan cities. The India Boys Integration and Research Project seeks to understand issues of violence and sexual exploitation of boys in the masseur industry. Through advocacy, intervention, mentorship, education, skills training, and job placement, the boys have a choice of getting out of this trade which earlier was non-existent.
Boys, ages 15-18, are encouraged through counseling and mentoring to enroll in the program. They are given the choice to select the vocational course they would like to participate in based on their aptitude test. Upon the completion of the training, the boys are offered job placement or microfinance loans. Throughout the program, a research process enables us to further understand the complexities of this issue as well as determine the best practices for the reintegration of boys in India. The project has given children in the masseur industry an option to sustain themselves with respect and dignity.
Phases 1 & 2 of this project have been completed. These phases involved 102 boys who have been part of the masseur trade. The boys received alternative livelihood training to become auto mechanics, electricians, plumbers, or cell phone repairmen. In addition to the training, the research considered:
• The vulnerabilities of boys to the masseur trade
• Whether training with employment reduces these vulnerabilities
Future phases will include:
• Awareness raising through education
• Ongoing monitoring of boys
SEXUAL EXPLOITATION OF BOYS AND YOUNG MEN: BASE LINE DATA IN INDIA & CAMBODIA
In considering sexual exploitation of children, boys are often excluded. This research:
•Challenges the myths around sexual exploitation of boys,
•Explores current research being done on the vulnerabilities of boys, and
•Considers factors that may strengthen their resilience, i.e., how training with employment might reduce vulnerabilities
Download (pdf) WHAT ABOUT BOYS? Glenn Miles, PhD and Heather Blanch
An initial exploration of sexually exploited boys in Cambodia