Sophie is a British girl. She was trafficked from the UK to Italy by a close friend and for the purposes of sexual exploitation. Her story breaks stereotypes and preconceptions to show a startling reality: This could happen to anyone! Sophie could be your sister, your daughter, your friend, your neighbour.


Through the support of family, friends, the police and charities, Sophie successfully rebuilt her life and overcame her trauma. She shared her story in the book ‘Trafficked’ and used some of the proceeds to set up the Sophie Hayes Foundation; a charity focused on providing key support to survivors to help them start their lives again.

Just a few years ago everything changed. I was trafficked. I was fooled. I was deceived by a man who said that he loved me. The tragedy is that I believed him. Now I know that love is not shown by forcing me to work on the streets, beating me up, force feeding me and turning me into someone with no mind of my own. For people like him my life meant nothing, I was a product and a vehicle to make money, but I am a survivor.

Since my ordeal I have been determined to turn the experience into a positive one,  everyone deserves freedom and their basic human rights, and although he stole my freedom, I am determined to do everything in my power to make a difference and share a story of Hope to others.”

Sophie Hayes – Founder

Sophie’s story of her journey into exploitation has been depicted in this short film, using the actual words her trafficker used:

Since 2012, we have worked to support survivors in a meaningful way, empowering survivors of trafficking to build hope-filled futures. Find out more here how we do that.

6 thoughts on “Sophie’s Story

  1. I have just finished reading your book which took just a day, I couldn’t put it down. Once finished I felt I had to message you and let you know that everything you’ve done since your heart wrenching past is so courageous and brave. I’m very lucky to never of had to go through anything like this but as a young 20 year old girl I idolise you for all your bravery and everything you have done to stand up against trafficking. I hope one day I can make a difference to so many peoples lives the way it seems you have done. I also hope that you find the love and happiness you deserve. I can’t imagine the hurdles you’ve had to overcome just to get through the days but pray that you can now look in the mirror and be proud of the reflection staring back of all the things you’ve achieved. Thank you so much for allowing my self and the world to read your story! I cried A LOT! but it’s really opened my mind to not only the dangers of situations but that the world needs people
    Like you to support it strong, brave and intelligent people to share awareness and to provide the knowledge to people like me that you can make a difference when you put your mind to it.
    Thanks again for sharing your journey
    Sophie Savvides

  2. I have just closed your book and decided that I need to thank you for being so brave and sharing your story. You are truly an inspiration to me and to many others who may or may not have been through the same or similar experiences as you did.
    I was completely unaware of how serious trafficking is and thought often to myself that prostitutes chose the life they lived but through your story I have realised how terribly wrong I was.
    Your story was unbelievable and I think many people are oblivious to what goes on because it has no effect on them but I will be sure to encourage as many people as possible to read your book and reach out to STOP THE TRAFFIK – I too plan to do so when I leave school. You are truly an inspiration and you have made me wake up every morning thinking, “I might have it bad but other people have it worse” and I pray that one day we will actually be able to stop the traffic.
    Thank you for sharing your story.

  3. Hi Sophie,

    I also read your book … and just must say: men you’re such an amazing and brave gorgeous women!!
    I can only imagine the real horror and scariest moments that you have been trough..

    I admire the way you stand up against trafficking and for the way you live your live after this horrible period.
    I cried a lot when I read your story and thought to myself: this could also happend to me…

    I deeply hope for you that you will find the love and peace that you deserve !

    Many many thanks for sharing your story

    Big thanks
    Nashreen Bonoo

  4. Dear Sophie,
    Words don’t reach me now, I’ve cried with you with every page I read.I have just finished reading your book which I found in a charity shop, the moment I’ve seen your book I knew it had to be mine and now I know why.
    I have cried along your side the entire journey and suffered for every single second you suffered but I can only comprehend as much as my brain and human nature will allow me as I’m a fortunate person not having to go through an ordeal like yours.
    I so many times wondered how did you manage to make it? It takes such strong will, determination and survival hunger when one can easily give up all to end the terrible things you went through.
    Must admit sometimes we humans are so quick to judge anyone without knowing anything about them or their stories.
    I admire your every day fight, the fact you’ve focused your pain into something positive and desire to help others prevent go through a similar story to yours.
    I can only pray that you find the will to fight this ordeal every day, that you can still enjoy the sun, blooming flowers and drops of rain on your skin.
    You deserve all the best to happen in your life Sophie, you are a wonderful woman and I take my hat off in front of you.
    I wish I could help people in need as well, if we’d all take a bit of time to do that the world would be a better place.
    Wishing you all the best!
    Andreea B

  5. You are an amazing woman. I just read your book in just 24 hours on my first day of holiday. My mind is blown by what you went through, and I cried with you for so much of the book. Your strength is astounding and extremely inspirational. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I hope one day you find the strength to bring Kas to justice, but understand why you currently can’t. Best of luck for the future, finding love and believing in yourself x

  6. Dear Sophie,
    As a mother of a 19 year old daughter I read this horrific story through the eyes of a loving & devoted mother (like your beautiful mum).
    Your story is so heart breaking & I found myself reading most pages with tears rolling down my cheeks, wanting to reach out to you and wrap my warm & safe arms around you.
    Your strength during your trafficking & your strength now to rebuild your life is so powerful, I just hope you can one day look in the mirror and see yourself as a “beautiful strong woman” as myself and anyone else that has read your story would see you!
    Lastly, please LOVE YOURSELF, I tell my daughter this all the time, truly love yourself!
    Thankyou Sophie for sharing, much love Pauline x
    Ps) I’m now passing your book onto my daughter to read.

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