The fatherless children of Filipino sex workers

“Dad is gone” is a series of photographs that focuses on children born from sex tourism in the Philippines.

Angeles City, 80 kilometres north of Manila, is known for its red-light district. Until 1991, the city was the home of Clark Air base, the largest US air base outside the United States. As a result many brothels and strip bars sprang up, turning the city into one of the most popular sex tourism destinations. Today, about 12,000 women work in the bars which flank Fields Avenue. Unlike in Thailand, international customers in the Philippines seek a “girlfriend experience” that can last for several weeks or months.

Each year, thousands of children are born from these paid relations. The fathers, whether American, Australian, British, German, Swiss, Korean or Japanese, often abandon their offspring. In this very Catholic country, abortion is considered a crime. Left behind, these children grow up in search of their identity, with their fathers a question mark.

The series was shot in Angeles City in August 2014.

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