We help young people that are experiencing a form of abuse where boys or girls are bribed or seduced into some form of sexual activity, sometimes without even realising it. This is called child sexual exploitation. The people that commit such crimes against young people can be the same age or older and from any kind of background. The abuse is a way for them to earn money, power or status. If often starts with someone pretending to be a friend or boy or girlfriend either online or offline – which gradually develops into abuse without the young person realising it. Anyone can become involved in this type of abuse – boys and girls from any background, wherever they live and whatever cultural background.
Whether you are in a relationship or not, its important to know that grooming or sexual exploitation can happen to anyone – and it may be really difficult to recognise if this is happening to you or your friends, or it might be too scary to step away from for example if you are being threatened.
If you think this is happening to you or a friend – there are a few important things to remember:
- Its not your fault
- There is help out there and things can get better
- You have a right to support from organisations like Basis Young People
- You will not be judged and its never too late to get help
We work in Leeds (girls only) and North Yorkshire (boys and girls).
Keep an eye out on our Facebook page or Instagram – or listen to what other young people had to say!
If you do think you are at risk: