Why Do Children Live on the Streets?

Children end up on the street for a number of reasons. Typically these are:

  • Family breakdown
  • Armed conflict
  • Poverty
  • Natural and man-made disasters
  • Famine
  • Physical and sexual abuse
  • Exploitation by adults
  • Dislocation through migration
  • Urbanization and overcrowding
  • Acculturation
  • Disinheritance or by being disowned

How Do Street Children Live?

Some street children go home to a family at the end of the day. Others have made their homes in the sewers of the town. Many will live in derelict buildings or find refuge in the doorway of a shop.

Street children survive through:

  • Begging and theft
  • Performing menial tasks
  • Prostitution
  • Selling illegal substances
  • Going through rubbish bins to find food

Street children face a number of dangers such as:

  • Hunger
  • Violence
  • Physical and mental abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Robbery
  • Extortion
  • Poor health
  • Freezing temperatures
  • HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted disease