World Executive Director for Nothing Without Us Society, Beauty Bayley says contrary to popular belief, male sex work exists and is rife in Botswana.

The organisation, which is based in Francistown, is a community-based society working to improve access to health services worldwide for sex workers.

“Sex work is not a gendered profession and anyone can be a sex worker and it is not a norm but a bias against women,” Bayley says, adding that part of their job is to raise awareness about sex work.

Bayley noted that the trade is open to anyone who is willing to buy and that means both genders. She encouraged male sex workers to continue being safe by using condoms and Prep to reduce the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases and HIV.

Meanwhile, Community Development Activist, Onkemetse Kwelagobe acknowledges that, unlike female sex work, male sex work has not been popular, but is now coming to light.

“We have to first understand that male sex work exists in either two platforms: being the ‘buyer’ or the ‘supplier.’ Both the supplier and the buyer can engage for sexual satisfaction or to fulfill their

sexual needs,” she explains, adding that it can also be a matter of personal choices; where one could choose to engage in sex work because they so wish to.

According to Kwelagobe, most of the time, buyers do not want committed relationships but still desire sexual satisfaction. “Some do it purely for financial gain,” she says.