Children Living On The Streets
Why Are Children On The Street?
There are many different reasons why a child has left home, some because their parents have died and they are left as orphans, others have fled from abusive situations and some families are living in such poverty that they are unable and unwilling to care for them.
Once on the street, some children show an interest in being resettled home or with a different family member quite quickly while others take a longer time going through the rehabilitation process usually due to being addicted to sniffing paraffin or drinking alcohol which they have taken to numb the pain of street life.
Part-Time Street Children
Part-time street children live in nearby villages/slums (i.e. Masese Village) and walk into town each day to earn money through picking & selling scrap, working in markets, selling charcoal and begging. Many of these children are in families who were displaced from Northern Uganda due to civil war.
Masese Village was a refugee camp turned into a slum where 5,000 men, women & children live today. The issues of poor sanitation, hygiene, communicable and tropical disease, hunger as well as economic and moral poverty have crippled this community. Some of the children are orphans; others have run away from violent and abusive situations.
Often their families are unable or unwilling to take care of them. They often resort to living on the streets of Jinja and become vulnerable to muggings, beatings, abuse, and often an addiction to paraffin or petty crime.