Globally, street-living children are the most fluid population of vulnerable children. They are conspicuous yet subsist on the fringes of the marginalized. This book attempts to sketch a holistic picture of the street child phenomenon across the globe.
The book incorporates empirical data from a cross-cultural study of this phenomenon in three mega cities—Mumbai, Nairobi, and Los Angeles—and some of the best practices developed by faith-based and secular organizations to help street-living children. These data include global estimates, analysis of the causative factors, occupations of these children, as also the resulting problems. The book also gives new insights into the impact of state policies to support secular and faith-based organizations, and the way social service is practiced by such organizations in India, Kenya, and USA.
The authors take the readers through the social construction of the street child phenomenon over the years by weaving socio-political, cultural, and historical perspectives in understanding the circumstances surrounding them.
Chapter 1: Street Children Conceptualized: The Problem with the Definition
Street Children Conceptualized: The Problem with the Definition
Countries around the world face a critical challenge as explosive urbanization, poverty, overcrowded cities, unequal distribution of wealth, and the effects of globalization have contributed to an increase in the number of minors and youth who migrate to the streets to supplement their struggling family's income as well as to survive. Every day millions of children live—and many die—in the streets of the world's cities. Sadly, no nation is spared this shame of shames (Pemberton 2007). Street living children and youth are a barometer for social progress in urban centres all over the world. It is a conspicuous sign that social and economic development often does not progress in harmonious ...