Urban Light is a not for profit organisation made up of a community of individuals dedicated to making a difference in the lives of boys and young men who are victims of sex trafficking. Based in Chiang Mai Thailand, the Urban Light Youth Centre rebuilds, restores and empowers the lives of boys by providing education, housing and support.
WHAT WE LIKE ABOUT IT:
This is a hands-on support program that directly engages with “Bar Boys” (young (often under-age) male prostitutes who frequent or are employed by bars and nightclubs to service their clients, both local and foreign). We have previously provided first aid training and “Survival Kits.” We are now focussing on raising funds to continue support for the drop-in centre, further education and job skill training, and also providing housing – a very effective pathway to help the boys move from dependence on a shocking industry. Urban Light is a dynamic, creative, fun filled community that has established a hub of life for these boys in Chang Mai that is safe, welcoming and life changing.
Many teenage boys move from rural to city in search of work and find themselves with little alternative but to enter the sex industry, often in a form of human bondage. With little education and often no network of support in the city, there is little perceived choice but to sell themselves to provide for their family back home and to survive. Very few other organisations are working with boys, most focus instead on girls. Urban Light projects are going a long way in the small steps to provide other work opportunities and decreasing the risk of human trafficking in these boys’ lives.