Child Prostitution is rife in South Africa. Girls aged 12 to 17 are the most common targets for the gangs that kidnap them from the street. Others who have no other escape, or ways to make money are recruited from the poor South African neighbourhoods. Some of the girls are runaways from abusive home backgrounds, they are addicted to drugs at such a young age and are trapped in a life controlled by pimps. The children are controlled with drugs and alcohol and by keeping them convinced that there is no other way out for them.
The girls that are found by the police give their age as 18 or older. Local police have almost given up chasing the clients as no one wants to give evidence. Instead, social services and police try to pick the children up and take them to safe houses, but the numbers authorities can help is small. Many of the girls they pick up run away and return back to the life of prostitution. A lot of the children are infected by sexual diseases like HIV, many fall pregnant. It is also believed that many missing children may have been taken by child prostitution gangs. There is an estimated 38,000 child prostitutes in South Africa.
The following documentary looks at young drug-addicted girls “working” to be able to afford their next fix. The girls in this gritty video talk about being raped, taking drugs, being abused and harming themselves as if they were just discussing the weather. They don’t get much help, and they don’t expect anyone to care. A very sad life indeed.