Band of Horses : Is There a Ghost
Dara Keo was just 12 when her mother sold her virginity for $500 to a wealthy, powerful Cambodian man. The virgin trade in Cambodia thrives due to a cultural myth that sex with a virgin can help men stay young and prevent illness — and also because no one has ever been convicted of purchasing virgins in Cambodia’s courts.
Rattana Chey, 21, learned that her mother was planning to sell her virginity six years ago, and sought help from Riverkids, an organization that provides refuge, schooling and vocational training for children. The organization bribed Rattana’s family with rice in exchange for not selling her. She also learned sewing, making her the family breadwinner, and also allowing her to saver her two younger sisters. “My mother wants to try to sell their virginity, but I will never let that happen,” Rattana says. “Thanks to my earning ability, I am the most powerful person in our family now. I am determined to break the pattern.”
Learn more via Marie Claire.