Hidden Violence: Preventing and Responding to Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse of Adolescent Boys


Promundo/MenCare shines a light on the specific challenges faced by adolescent boys who experience sexual violence. This subject has been under-studied so far, though researchers have begun to explore it in recent years. The report emphasizes that societal notions and expectations of masculinity can make it more difficult for young boys to recognize and disclose sexual abuse. The perception that boys are rarely victims of sexual exploitation or abuse also means fewer services targeted at their treatment and recovery. The report recommends integrating a focus on sexual violence against boys within existing sexual and gender-based violence programs and ensuring child protection policies and services meet the needs of male children when screening for sexual abuse and exploitation. It also calls for greater attention to be paid to the interlinkages between sexual violence against young boys and homophobic sexual violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation. Similarly, the problem of sexual abuse and exploitation of adolescent boys should be integrated into national HIV/AIDS plans as a public health issue.

Promundo and MenCare
Publication type
Report / Study / Data
Countries this relates to
Language of materials
Violence against children
Gender based violence