Govt neglects street kids

17 December 2018 | Social Issues

A University of Namibia (Unam) study has found that only 3% of the 217 street children surveyed had received social grants, while a mere 5.53% had access to school and only 6.45 % received some form of psychosocial counselling.

The study also highlighted that these children are reliant on handouts from the general public and very seldom receive services from the responsible ministries, such as the ministries of child welfare and poverty eradication.

'The Demographic Profile of Street Children: A study of Windhoek, 2015' was commissioned by the child welfare ministry to determine the socio-demographic characteristics of street children in Windhoek, as the population remains relatively unknown.

Based on the total estimated population size of 400 street children in Windhoek, the sample size was set at 197 street children to be reached, considering a 5% margin of error, a 95% confidence level and a 50% response distribution. The study, compiled by Unam social work students, also found that while state hospital services were very accessible, only 12.44 % of the street children have been able to access an ambulance.

The report also found that 23.5% of the street children have engaged in work and employment to make a living, while 17.51% made use of other income-generating activities to earn money.

The study found that 33% of the children had access to spiritual or church services, while the majority (67%) received food or visited soup kitchens.

The results showed that child welfare ministry was among the least mentioned organisations providing a service to these street children, at 20.28%, while the poverty eradication ministry was the worst provider (1.38%).



JEMIMA BEUKES

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