Women Undercover | BBC World Service

Mimi Chakarova: Love, Art and Anger
| The Kitchen Sisters Present

The awesome fearlessness of female undercover reporters
| The New York Times Online

Going Undercover 
| Al Jazeera English

Undercover to Expose Sex Traffickers 
| BBC World's Outlook

"The Price of Sex" on Turkish TV
| CNN Turk

Correspondent Confidential
| VICE United States

UN.GIFT catches up with filmmaker Mimi Chakarova
| United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime

A Human Life: Priceless No More
| The Ukrainian Week

Review | Global Policy Journal

WOMAN OF THE WEEK: MIMI CHAKAROVA | The Women in the World Foundation

Mimi Chakarova on CNN | Connect The World

Undercover Filmmaker | CNN Freedom Project

Mimi Chakarova on BBC World 

"Slavery 2012" Podcast | The Commonwealth Club of California

Interview with Mimi Chakarova | United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking

Embassy of the United States of America | Ottawa

My Defining Moment: Mimi Chakarova | CBC

Video Interview with Mimi Chakarova | Reeling the Reel

Interview with Mimi Chakarova | Channel Guide Magazine

Skin Trade Exposed |

"The Price of Sex" Podcast | Human Rights Watch

"The Price of Sex" | Telegraph21

"The Price of Sex" Is a Work of Art Huffington Post 

The Price of Sex on CNN  

The Price of Sex (Web Exclusive) | Cineaste Magazine

Daniel Pearl Awards Winners Announced | iWatch News

Interview with Mimi Chakarova | Pop Culture Classics

Ten Years Underground: A Photojournalist’s Quest to Expose the Sex Trade | Her Circle e-zine

The Price of Sex: An Investigation of Sex Trafficking | USAID Impact Blog by Mimi Chakarova

The Price of Sex Variety 

Review of 'The Price of Sex' (Bulgarian) Kultura

FILM: So Much More Than Just 'Trafficked Women'

Women in Hollywood indieWIRE

Human Trafficking, The Terrible "Price of Sex" NPR Talk of the Nation (Radio)

Review: Human Rights Watch Film Festival 2011 Film-Forward

Arts Express: Eco-Terrorists, Sex Slaves, And What's Up At The HRW Festival News Blaze (Radio)

Preview of the festival highlighting THE PRICE OF SEX (Russian) Reporter RU

Preview of the festival highlighting THE PRICE OF SEX (Russian)

The Human Rights Watch Film Festival Digs Deep, Asks the Hard Questions HuffPost

Almost Me Snap Judgment (Radio)

Exposing the Sex Traffickers The Crime Report

Journalist-Activist Chakarova Exposes ‘Price of Sex’ SF360

Women Make Movies Nabs Two Human Rights Films indieWIRE

An Interview with Mimi Chakarova Captive Daughters


The U.N. General Assembly signed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, yet we continue to witness the sale of human beings and the degradation of women's bodies and minds. THE PRICE of SEX gives you a sense of what trafficking does to women.

Your reactions to the film have been an important step to encourage dialogue and provide a forum for ideas and solutions. We've posted some of them below:


Re: Screening in the UK
Please contact our European distributor, Cat&Docs:

Re: Please make this movie available online
Thank you for your email. It's available on Vimeo on Demand: but I'm afraid only in the U.S. at this point. We are working on making it available online worldwide.

My reaction to your film
Hello i hafe seen your whole movie it is it is heartbreaking what i've hafe see when i think about it what happens with this all of these poor womans i feel their fear and pain in my body whether it be my sisters and my blood why i say this because this film touched so deeply my soul when watching and i hear their stories it makes me so angry and i feel total powerless the menn who rape and abuse these women they are no menn there are no humans they are the filth of this world i have no other words for animals have more manners i asked so many times p.l.s.god help these womens this must stop on this world why this hapens but god does not respond to my question how must i believe in a god if nothing happened i'm disappointed god does not exist i think or is it the evolution theory then it's gone very wrong with the evolution of the human race my opinion it is mind blowing i do not know what is true what i do know that money is the devil on this word that is for sure people do everything for a piece of iron and a piece of paper with ink whole beautiful young womans lives are being destroyed fore it i know it's a very big problem worldwide i can say and hope that it must stop but it does not stop that's the reality it goes on and on day after day woman after women rape after rape when it stops and how and how it stops where is the end of this terrible story what should i say more i would like to stop this and i think much more pepole but how how what can we do to stop this hell for these women.. sorry for my bad english.
Hello Congratulations to amazing documentary. I have not seen the film but the little I've seen is very touching. I'd like to make some donations, but I don't want to send cheques in the post. I don't have chewue books anymore. There must be an easier way to donate such as Paypal or credit car payment. Secondly I'd like to see the film. Where can I rent/buy/download please. Many Thanks Vanessa
Faces of Human Trafficking
To fully understand what those precious women, being trafficked and deceived, are forced to endure and go through in a daily basis, it's impossible for someone like me to identify, yet, when I look at their faces, when I hear their voices, when I see where they come from, I find myself thinking,"It could be me. I could be this woman." When the fact hit me, I realized I'm not so different from them, apart from being the lucky one to be born and raised in a wealthy Western country. When I realized that, in the end, we all share the same kind of understanding and experience of what it's like to feel pain, shame and hurt, though I can't even start to comprehend the depth of those feelings in their part, it changed my perspective and the mindset I had concerning this issue. And all of a sudden, this phenomenon that once had been just numbers and figures in my eyes, had turned out to be a very real and intense, nearly an obsessive matter to me. Suddenly this phenomenon has a face, and not just one, but hundreds, even thousands, of faces. It's heart-breaking, yet so powerful. When I see those faces, it harshly reveals the state of my heart. No longer can I hide behind the statistics. Now that I've come to see that it's all about human lifes - about the stories of another human beings with hopes and dreams - I can't turn my eyes off and ignore them anymore. No way is that possible. Thanks to Vika, Jenea, Olesea and the other brave ones featured in the film, they made me to realize that I need to become the part of a solution. Now I have a goal and a purpose for my life; I want to become the voice for these women and girls. I want to learn to understand more about their stories, their experiences, their pain etc. and seek ways to help these women get educated, equipped, and empowered so that they will be able to stand up for themselves and live independently. And most of all, live free. This documentary is the one I've talked about and shown to many people and I will keep spreading awareness about human trafficking through it. Thank you, thank you, thank you! May God bless you, Mimi!
Re: Faces of Human Trafficking
It's emails like yours that give me hope and strength to keep doing my work. Thank you for your kind and loving words.
frustration and human nature
I am very young and do yet know of the world so much, but from what I've seen heard and understood I'll like to say these words. The main reason for human prostitution be it of females or boys stems from the really basic reason of demand and fear. Now demand is something we cannot eradicate even if we tried our level best too because it arises from the raw animalistic part of our human behavior, much in tandem with Freud's theories. But fear is something that we can abolish even if by a little. fear is(in my opinion) in this case twofold. one is in the minds of these unfortunately damned women, fear to escape because of the difficulties of documents and the corruption in the legal affairs of the country, fear of living their lives n poverty and shame even if they do escape. the other lies in our hearts. even if we know something unlawful s going on majority would refrain from doing anything out of fear from backlashes from organised crime units or in certain cases the non-availability of legal aid. in this scenario most who do want do something lose their guts due to lack of support. Though in these few observations I try to discern the cause, I do not find a comprehensive solution. Yet the faces of the damned compel the people to think. but a person is smart, decisive, people on the other other hand are panicky. so in this light, is there really a solution to this?
Re: frustration and human nature
Thank you for your thoughts. I encourage you to read some of the press articles posted on this page (left side) to find out more about viable solutions.
I am terribly saddened by what I have just watched. The biggest problem lies in the fact that these people are de-humanized by the community as though they choose to do this or they have no families, friends or dreams. People blame the victim, because it is easier. But they don't have the guts to confront the agressor. As a Turkish man, I am ashamed to be hearing those stories. How can a human lower themself this much to take advantage of such girls? I sometimes see prostitutes in the streets here but they are generally transgenders or transvestites who are not solicited by another person as far as I am concerned. You never see foreign prostitutes in the streets, I realized it now but I never thought they would be forced to live in such conditions, locked-up with no light and basic needs. I am heart-broken. Thank you for bringing this to light, Chakarova, and I hope it raises more awareness around the world. Your work is praiseworthy.
Re: De-humanizing
Thank you for writing such a thoughtful post and sharing your reaction with us.
This has been one of the things that mostly interests me in the crime field. I wish to one day work for the federal government and I hope this specific topic is the one I choose. This subject disgusts me every time I hear it even mention. I don't understand how people have the heart to do something of this magnitude.
We are human
We are all humans, we should not act like animals, What i saw in video is more than an animal could do. Its my humble request kindly live and let live others. help each other like good colleague. no one has right to snatch someones liberty. Be a man and live like a man. Regards
The Price....
A beautiful film. Throwing snowballs at the fires of hell. But when snow is all you have, sometimes... the gesture does not go un-noticed. Thank you for this work. Without buyers, there can be no sellers. But how do we change the hearts and minds of these consumers? For that is what we must do. My heart and mind is an easy piece of work... but as long as humans become commodities, the harder work is endless. So your snowballs sizzle - like the sound of good food to the starving. The nutrition sinks the soul. And the sound of the singing - like a life-blow. The last thing noticed? The pain. Of course. It is easy to find the just watch. To just listen. A small thing. Next to these endurances, it hardly marks the radar. Too often, good women do everything, while good men do nothing. But this is why the cameras roll.
Re: The Price....
I really appreciate your thoughtful comment. And I've seen good men do much good; I've also seen women sell their own. Unfortunately, greed and cruelty are not gender specific. Thank you for watching the film and for taking the time to write.
Seeing this makes my heart stop knowing that people that are supposed to be 'civilized' or a law enforcement officer somehow sleep at night. The total delusional egocentric experience of these men is sickening, and by God I hope that somehow these images of them will get back to them. They need confrontation. They need to feel the damage they do. They need to feel that as a human they have failed because they failed to recognize those girls as more than a piece of meat. God I hope that they will feel ashamed for the rest of their lives, I hope that they cannot sleep, that they are chased by nightmares from the dark cave of their soul. Seeing this makes it hard not to hate people, no matter how bad I wish I wouldn't.
Thank you, I have just been searching for information approximately this subject for ages and yours is the best I have came upon till now. But, what concerning the conclusion? Are you certain in regards to the supply? bbeacfdefeed
Your Documentary & My Reaction
I found this documentary to be very moving and truthful, without the usual "drama" often put into films. An excellent project that provokes thought. I am an immigrant to the USA and feel very blessed to have not come from one of those (third world) countries. I have a home and could easily sponsor one of those 12 year olds (adopt?) so they could continue their education in the USA, perhaps go to college and be able to have choices in their life (to go home, empowered) (or not). I am sure there are many other persons in many countries who could open their homes and hearts to help even one other person from such an almost certain fate, considering their village circumstances and the predators who feed off of their living conditions in the villages. I know this is different than donating "money" to a foundation or to the documentary efforts (a needed thing as well) but, if you are interested in looking into this avenue, I am sure there are Law Enforcement (in USA, UK, etc.), Legal (Lawyer/Advocate), etc. who would support such efforts in "other" countries (such as the USA, UK, etc.) where these young girls would have a chance at "live" and choices. It would be important to get these girls out before they think this is the only way "out" and before they "trust" these traffickers. I am willing to volunteer my time for such an effort and sponsor or adopt such a young lady, if necessary. If you are interested in setting something like this up, please contact me. We often don't realize that, "there for the grace of God go I", simply by where we are born, who/what our parents are, and the circumstances in life. It does not "fix" the system, but would save some lifes. My best to all of you who are involved in this project. Irma Forensic Nurse Examiner USA
Prostitution should be legal BUT!
The Director of Twelve Years A Slave; stated that it's not a historical piece the concept of Slave Trafficking and this very special documentary more than points this out!
.. changing our thinking
The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking. ~ Albert Einstein Our 'civilization' has evolved and arrived at what is now a very disturbing place. As ever growing numbers severely suffer, those with power and in control seem to care less and less. Will we be able to alter in time this disastrous course we're setting.. right now the ultimate outcome is terrifyingly suspect.
Re: .. changing our thinking
I think we could. I am counting on our youth and doing everything in my power to give them the right tools.
I run an Amnesty International group at my school in Yorkshire in England, and today, after previously watching this documentary several times I showed my fellow students, and we all came to a unanimous decision - that this is one of the most powerful documentaries we have ever seen. I can't thank you enough for making this and shedding light on such an important and horrific issue. I could not get over the sheer bravery of these women and the traumas that they have endured. We are so sheltered from the destitute and poverty these women come from and the risks they'd take just so they can eat. Young girls, the same age or a little older then us, being made to go through such a traumatic experience - this touched a nerve with everyone in the group that watched this today. There is little known about the hellish world of the sex trafficking industry and you have shed light on it - I really hope women and men around the world can watch this and understand the horrors these girls are forced to go through. Corruption and lack of justice is hard to eradicate - but I strongly believe awareness will help, and your documentary provided such. Thank you.
Dear Ms. Jones: It's words like yours that inspire me to continue doing good work and to live a life of service. For that I am deeply grateful to you and your fellow students.
It's epidemic
This is the tip of the iceberg, the most extreme, the most unfortunate. The sad fact is, examples of this continue and are accepted everyday in life, even in the US. It's not recognized as slavery, or the commerce is not the same. But the oppression remains the same, the sense of obligation remains the same, as does - - in some cases - - the hopelessness. My point is this : that until we as human beings reach the point where we are able to look at each other with gratitude and respect, and at ourselves with humility, extremes like human slavery will exist, and, at, the lesser end of the spectrum, bullying will continue. Our advertising habit of "sex sells" does no one any favors. We have no one to blame but ourselves.
Re: It's epidemic
Thank you for your intelligent and thoughtful response, Ms. Ninguem.
Hi, I'm trying to watch the film but your International distributor has no links for where we can buy or watch it!
Please contact Kristen Fitzpatrick at Women Make Movies and she would be able to assist your request: Thank you!
Hi! Where can I watch the whole documentary online? I admire your work. If only everybody was as good as you, sex trafficking would not exist.
Please contact Kristen Fitzpatrick at Women Make Movies and she would be able to assist your request: Thank you!
We are trying to watch the documentary
We are trying to find the documentary in Turkish stores but we cannot find it. There is a link for us to purchase the documentary as DVD but the shipping is not avaible outside of the States. I and my girlfriend tried to watch partials and trailers, we have also tried to understand what is in Russian dub. Is that possible to find it in Turkey?
Re: We are trying to watch the documentary
Please contact Kristen Fitzpatrick at Women Make Movies and she would be able to assist your request: Thank you!
The Price of Sex
I went to Turkey in 2011 with a group of students from the college where I teach. I loved being there and was the first person in my family who went back there since 1922 when my father's family was forced out of Izmir as it burned to the ground. When we were in Istanbul I didn't notice anything obvious regarding the sex trade. I did notice, however, that stray dogs in the city are afforded food, shelter, and health care. Same in Cappadochia. But when we were in towns along the Aegean coast I started to notice certain things . I started seeing a high number of very young and scantily clad women, from what I could see mostly Romanian, who were soliciting in hotels wherever cruise ships were numerous. Also there is a shrine to Mary on a hill outside of Selcuk (close by Ephesus) where I found many sex workers, again mostly Eastern European, coming to pray. There were signs all requesting modesty in one's dress, but this was disregarded by many young women--they wore clothes that left little to the imagination, yet no one harassed them or barred their entrance. When I asked our tour guide about it she said that they were most likely sex workers, and they pray to Mary as their patroness saint. When we came to Izmir our hotel (very pricey boutique establishment in my Grandmother's old neighborhood) was full of sex workers from Eastern Europe, and they were dressed in very provocative clothing and expensive jewelry. The hotel staff acted very embarrassed about them, but I suspect it was an act for our sake. Obviously that hotel derived a lot of income from the business these women generated. When in public they seemed very cheerful, but the few times I saw them alone in an elevator I sensed a crushing depression emanating from every one of them. I have to conclude that stray dogs of Istanbul are treated so much better than these women. I feel so much sadness when I think of them. And I know well that this is not just a problem in Turkey. I'd bet there's plenty of trafficking going on here, even in the small outwardly conservative US city where I live. Thank you Mimi Chakarova for your courage. I'm so glad that you made it out safe and hope that you remain so, and I hope your film is seen by those having the will and ability to change this horrible situation. My one question to you is: What do you think is the best way for the average person to help?
Re: The Price of Sex
First, I would like to thank you for sharing your observations. It's always helpful to know what others see and experience. I also appreciate your thoughtful comment about the film. And you're absolutely right – trafficking and sexual exploitation exist in the United States, in Britain, in Germany, in Italy, in Russia, in Brazil, in China... need I go on? Our biggest challenge is how to change the mindset of people who exploit and abuse the most desperate in society. And this starts with information, a dialogue, and enough citizens who regard sex slavery as a human right violation. What I would ask of you is to share what you've seen and what you've learned with others. And find ways to get involved in your own community. One more thing... next time you are in an elevator or a shrine or a bar area where you see women sold for sex, engage them. Ask them how they are. Ask them if they want a cup of coffee or tea. You'll be surprised how far a little bit of kindness can penetrate the sad condition of a person. Many of the women I've interviewed remember those acts of human kindness -- when someone offered them a blanket or a warm cup of tea. Or simply a word to let them know you don't judge and dismiss them.
Re: The Price of Sex
Thanks for responding, and for your suggestion of engaging these women in a kind and compassionate way. I would suggest, however that if a man does so he should be careful not to create undue attention to the woman. As I read your reply I remembered that most of the women I saw in Izmir, Kusadasi and Selcuk never seemed to be alone. It seems to me now when I think about it that there were minders on the fringes watching their every move, especially in hotel lobbies where they worked. I'm sure this is true everywhere. When a unknown man engages a sex worker in conversation he is most likely seen by the minders as either a potential customer or a threat, and this could potentially cause problems for the woman you're trying to help. Just a thought.
Re: The Price of Sex
You are absolutely right. Always good to exercise caution and good common sense.
Touching movie
I was captured by the movie, and keep thinking what we can do to chance this abuse of young women like this. And we all know this is happening everyday, we in scandinavia don`t see so much of it probably because going to a prostitute is still looked as a shame. and that`s good but it happen`s here too of course. In same time we see newspaper, films, there having sex is the main thing so how can we chance this. Don`t´have solution but i thank you for the movie and hope we can do something to help those girls and make it harder to criminal elements earn money with trafficking. Keep up with your work lets hope people opens there eyes and do something, THANK YOU
Getting involved
Thank You for making this documentary. I've seen it few days ago in telly and find myself thinking about these women every day. I have an online fashion shop and most of the customers are young girls and women. I thought it could be a good idea to have the possibility for my customers to donate a small amount or percentage when they're buying from my store. They would be helping the girls same age as they are. Who can I contact with this matter?
Thank you for making this document that has such a important issue. I hope people will come more aware and maybe one day things will be different. As someone wrote here before Im also worried about the fact that even the men in important roles are using sex workers, so its even harder to make change. And I say this because I know my self an situation where leader of one of these countries that was also mentioned in your document was having many prostitutes for him and he's friends. Awfull but true...
I am wanting to help. There is more that I can do than send money. I want to be able to commit my time to aiding women who have been sold into this un-agreed upon life. Where do I start? What organizations are there to join? Who do I write? What can I do? After viewing the documentary, and seeing the only way to "get involved" on the website was through cash donations, I was left hopeless. I'm not hopeless, and neither is fighting for these women's lives. We have to, as a global community, begin a concerted effort in putting an end to the global degradation of women.
Re: Hope
Yes, you can absolutely help and here is how. You live in a state and city that has some of the highest numbers of trafficked women in the United States. It wouldn't take long to do some research and find out what local organizations offer women help -- there are shelters, there are health clinics, there are job training programs. And most importantly, there are ways for you to contribute your time, skills and care within your own community. You are not hopeless and you can do your part as soon as you choose to, Meisha.
Educate our young men
The root of all in immoral hands. Not only should young women in all countries be educated about the dangers and reality of human slavery, but young men as well. As a divorced mother in America, I have two boys and I will do my part to make sure my sons never pay into the evil human sex industry. My oldest son understands the reality of pornography because I have talked to him and he knows that many of the women are either drugged, being forced, or mentally ill. When teens learn about the brutality and lack of freedom and exploitation of women and children, the lure of porn and prostitution diminishes. In the U.S.A., porn and stripping are rampant in movies, on I-phones, the internet, on billboards. Our teens see this and think it's something exciting that "adults" do. As a society we encourage our teens to go to college and secure high paying jobs. The party lifestyle is glorified in their college years with over indulgence in drinking/drugs/sex, and then many of these college grads get high paying jobs. Not all, but many of these men hire strippers/prostitutes here in the U.S., and many travel overseas and hire prostitutes. Parents buy their children electronics with internet access and don't monitor activity like they should. It's similar to the parents in the documentary who fail to keep in touch with their children who go abroad. Evil begins in the mind of the innocent and parents MUST protect, educate and stay involved in the lives of their grown children. American women also get tricked/lured into prostitution here in the U.S. As an American woman/business owner, I've chosen to fight against sex slavery. I appreciated your boxing scene because that's what it takes...a fight. Sometimes even starting an educational talk with a teen is a challenge. I was raped in college and it changed my life. I relate to the lady in the documentary who said she wished she hadn't been born, the beautiful lady who jumped out of the building. I'm thankful and pray every night that I can provide for my family in an honest profession and that I no longer feel depressed. I have been blessed and recovered from the pain, am fortunate enough to live in a free country and take care of my family. For me to ignore this topic would be a sin. Not all Americans are greedy self absorbed individuals. There are quite a few of us still left who care and have a real ability to help. I admire your work and your courage. You are a courageous person. The ladies who run the hotlines are warriors for justice and they should be blessed with support. Although there is no single solution, the fight is worth while. And let's educate the future pocket books to put their money into a worthy cause instead of in the hands of evil men and women who ruin the lives of the innocent.
Re: Educate our young men
I couldn't agree more with you. One of our main reasons for making the film was to target the stigma and silence surrounding violence committed against women. But another reason was to put this information in the hands of young people -- to educate them and open their eyes. You are doing this with your sons. And imagine if most households and schools did exactly that. Imagine if we taught our boys and girls that they are not a commodity; that they deserve to respect themselves and each other; that they should live in true brotherhood and sisterhood. Imagine if we didn't place so much importance on material items that deprive our youth from thinking critically and with vigor. I have the utmost respect for you sharing your story and your reaction to "The Price of Sex." When I read such intelligent and sincere words, I know that all the years of hard work were worth it. For that I am grateful to you.
a safe place
Hi my name is Sharon. I have seen several documentaries and read several books on child trafficking. It makes me sick. My husband and I have 3 beautiful daughters and four lovely granddaughters. I could not imagine them having to go through something like this. My heart goes out to all of these young ladies. I have long wanted to be involved some how. I have a ranch with a big house. If any of the young ladies need a place to feel safe and free I would love to offer my home. You are welcome to come and visit and check me and my husband out if necessary. Reintroduction into regular life must be difficult and I can offer my home for that. Please let me know if that is something that is of interest to you. You have my email address. Thank you for all that you do. Sharon
Re: a safe place
Dear Sharon, The fact that people like you exist in this world gives me courage and hope. Thank you for posting your reaction and offering your home as a safe place for trafficked women. As you can imagine, it is difficult for legal and immigration reasons to make that a reality but I sincerely encourage you to get involved in the state of California, which happens to have some of the highest numbers of trafficking within the U.S. It warms my heart to read your note and for that I THANK YOU!
wanting: to help
If I knew of a way to bring a lady with her children to my home in the United States I would give them a good family home and a new life. It is a shame there are so many evil people out there. If I had the money I would send for all of them girls and their family bring them to the United States of America help them find good jobs and start a brand new life.
Re: wanting: to help
Dear Raymond, Thank you for caring and for posting your note. There are many trafficked girls in the United States as well. Unfortunately, it's a human rights abuse on a global level and it will take serious and persistent effort to fight it. I do believe that every act of kindness helps us get closer to achieving that, so I dearly appreciate your note. – Mimi