Life Histories and Survival Strategies Amongst Sexually Trafficked Girls in Nepal

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38 Citations (Scopus)


Many girls involved in sex work in Asia do so because they are compelled by economic circumstances and social inequality. Some enter sex work voluntarily, others do so by force or deception, sometimes involving migration across international borders. Nepalese girls involved in sex work via trafficking are the focus of this article, which aims at increasing our understanding of the context of sex trafficking, the methods and means of trafficking, living conditions in brothels and survival strategies among trafficked girls. Girls trafficked from Nepal to India are typically unmarried, illiterate and very young. Key routes to sex trafficking include employment-induced migration to urban areas, deception (through false marriage or visits) and abduction. Past initiatives towards their needs have adopted a welfare approach; such initiatives alone are inadequate as they ignore the importance of empowerment of women in the migration process and skill development in community re-integration. Anti-trafficking interventions need to be considered at (i) community level before movement begins; (ii) urban centres which are both source and transitory centres for trafficking; (iii) trafficking level when girls are highly mobile and in brothels; and (iv) return from trafficking as girls to move back into the community. 

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)235-248
Number of pages14
JournalChildren and Society
Issue number3
Early online date7 Apr 2008
Publication statusPublished - May 2008
Externally publishedYes


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