Ultimate Betrayal - Cambodia’s orphanage scandalThursday, September 18, 2014 IRIN / Nicky Lankester
The rapid growth of poorly run charities in Cambodia is putting children at increased risk of sexual exploitation and abuse. More than 90 percent of so-called orphanages operate privately, with lax controls. As many as three out of every four children living in these institutions have at least one living parent, according to the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF), and have been sent there with the promise of food, shelter and an education. To attract funding, these so-called orphanages are opening their doors to tourists and volunteers who are granted direct access to the children without any kind of prior screening. As a result, Cambodia has become a magnet for paedophiles and travelling sex offenders. Ultimate Betrayal explores the risks to children when they enter care homes which have few, if any, effective child protection policies.