Portraits of Survival

While on assignment for Glamour’s “Women of the Year” portfolio, photographer Norman Jean Roy met one of its brave subjects, Somaly Mam, a former sex slave from Cambodia, who works to free people trapped in the sex industry and reintegrate them into society.  In January 2008, Roy embarked on a challenging and emotional photographic journey through Cambodia to document the sex trade, hoping to shed light on this dark and often ignored subject.  This excerpt from Roy’s Traffik, his first photographic book, spotlights sex-trade survivors who have been helped by Mam and the organization she co-founded, AFESIP Cambodia, to return abused women, girls and boys to normal lives.  It also includes portraits of those still in danger.  A portion from the sale of Traffik will go to the Somaly Mam Foundation. View the Vanity Fair slideshow here.

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7 thoughts on “Portraits of Survival

  1. Thanks Noel for sharing this book and images. I followed the links and was so moved by the stories of these incredible survivors. Also, the powerful organizations and saints that are helping these young girls and women to experience life with hope, support, love and education. It is such an amazing complexity of issues and concerns. Again, I appreciate your passion in this moral cause that thankfully more of the world is becoming aware of because of activists like you from a small city in Montana…I so look forward to “your book”, writings and photo’s of your experiences compassion, insight and victories!!!!
    Women hold up…the sky…period!!! xoxo

      1. Women do hold up the sky. Period. Exclamation point. Love you Sherbear. Can’t wait until we are face-to-face again one day. Thanks for all your kind words of support. Loving the life I am currently living. xxxo

  2. Words cant describe how much you have inspired me today. Im in Mai Sai right now doing exactly this. I stumbled upon your blog whilst trying to research the issue around here. Keep up your awesome work. I would love to see if you met anyone in this area that needs help or an area I would be able to go into. I added my email in here, any info you can give would be incredibly useful.

    1. Glad you found me. I’m a volunteer in the prevention of human trafficking here in Mae Sai with a Thai NGO called DEPDC/GMS. I’m heading to Chiang Mai tomorrow but will be back in a week (post-Songkran)if you want to meet up. Lunches, evenings and weekends are best. There are several NGOs here in Mae Sai and a few working in anti-trafficking.

  3. Norman Jean Roy is an incredible photographer! I hope you get to meet him and convince him that you should be his apprentice. So proud of you!

    1. That would be radness galore. He does incredible portrait work. I’d love to eventually get his book. $50 bucks U.S. Maybe I can find it in Thailand at a fraction! I would love to do something similar. It’s kind of hard in my position now. But soon…

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