Prostitution and human trafficking are illegal within Mongolia but the sex trade is growing. While some women are being sold openly on the streets of the capital, others are exploited discreetly out of karaoke bars, saunas and massage parlours. Mongolia is a source, transit and destination country for sex trafficking. Ulaanbaatar is often overlooked as a centre of prostitution, but – despite increased activity in border areas – it remains the hub for the country’s sex trade. But as the women in the city experience violence and social stigma, some are navigating riskier environments beyond the city.

According to a 2014 report from the United Nations Institute for Training and Research, between 3,000 and 5,000 women and children are trafficked each year from rural communities into cities and beyond the nation’s borders. Unicef estimates that roughly 19,000 women are exploited in prostitution in Mongolia, however, some field workers cite much higher numbers. The state’s population sits at around 3 million. While male prostitutes do exist, they are a small minority.


Our Mongolian employees founded a local Talita organization in Mongolia in 2013. Prior to this, there was not a single NGO in the country offering long-term support and rehabilitation in shelters for our target group. Talita Mongolia was the first organization in the country licensed to work with children who have been subjected to sexual exploitation. Talita Mongolia applies the Talita method and the work is financed by Talita Sweden.

In 2019, our five employees in Ulan Bator operated two shelters (a villa and an apartment). In total, they supported 21 clients during the year, of which 12 lived in the shelters. Out of the 21 individuals, 11 were minors.


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