From the Voices of Domestic Sex Trafficking Survivors:  Photographic Expressions of Pain, Struggle, Beauty, & Hope

This project is dedicated to the survivors who courageously participated in this study, giving of their wisdom, their experiences, and their deeply creative selves through words and photography. This is also dedicated to every survivor who has not yet been seen, heard, or identified. May you find freedom and restoration


Human trafficking is a human rights violation, enslaving women, men, and children around the globe.  The Palermo Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons defines trafficking as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons, by improper means (such as force, abduction, fraud, or coercion) for an improper purpose including forced labor or sexual exploitation.  Sex trafficking is defined as a commercial sex act induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such acts has not attained 18 years of age.

About the Voices of Survivors Project: 

Seven women participated in this photovoice study, six providing eligible photos.  They were instructed to take or gather as many pictures as they wanted over 30 days, with the only limitation of no identifying information, such as faces.  The prompt given was to take pictures and share a caption that expresses their experiences as a survivor.  The participants then participated in a focus group to together discuss the shared themes and messages of their pictures.  The following display includes their pictures in their chosen designated order.  Each participant also chose their identifying name or number displayed throughout the study.