Concept Note On Support For Street Children In Kabul

1326 words - 6 pages


Background & Justification

The legacy of decades of war in Afghanistan led to a nationwide breakdown of social and economic structures. Poverty is the main determinant of child labour, many families consider not having other choice but to put their children to work. The United Nations Children’s Fund estimates that 31% of 5-14 years old are engaged in child labour and the net enrollement rate of primary school is just above 50% . Street work is one of the most intensive activity sector. Parents consider a valid solution to resort to it temporarily to face unexpected crisis. This sudden poverty can be the result of national, local or ...view middle of the document...

The short term and long term consequences of street work are complex: injury/death caused by traffic accidents, suicide bombings and explosions; verbal, physical and sexual abuse; illegal work involving drugs.

In Kabul City, more than half of the population is under 19 and besides the lack of birth registration and proper birth certificates, identity cards or school certificates, there is an endemic family poverty. The increasing number of street working children is due also to the change in family structure and high number of orphans; only half of school age children are enrolled in school .
After the Taliban’s fall in 2001, the Afghan Government has been working with local communities, non-governmental organizations and international community (UNICEF became a leading partner in the reconstruction of the education sector, a relationship that continues today). Together, they have repaired hundreds of school buildings, provided safe water and sanitation facilities to more than 1,000 others, supplied more than 8,500 tents to house temporary classrooms and airlifted thousands of tons of school supplies into the country .
Informal education plays a significant role in the education of street working children (14%), this is mainly due to education provided to them by NGOs in Kabul. When asked for reasons behind their lack of attendance at school and lack of education, child workers ranked their top 3 reasons as follows: necessity to work, high cost of school related expenses and their parents' decision not to have the child enrol in school .

In response to this situation, BDN proposes to give an opportunity to receive the best possible education, life skills and vocational training. BDN already partnered with 3 local schools across Kabul, and implemented a program to integrate 550 such students ages 3 to 16 into an academic program. BDN aims at expand the ongoing project and provide more structured support to street children. The youth might be street-smart but vulnerable to sexual exploitation, road traffic accidents, drug addiction or coercion in to criminal activity. Child workers show signs of psychological problems: anxiety, stress, symptoms of abuse and violence. The AIHRC Children’s Situation Summary Report (2013) shows that about 51.8% of the children are working one way or another, 45 percent of them are forced to work because of economic poverty. Unfavorable working environment and lack of facilities at the site is the most important challenges faced by the worker children .

Key activities:

● The establishment of a community based education centre (CBEC), upon meeting and guarantee of the support of local religious and community leaders (parents participation is strongly encouraged). Center hosts daily boys and girls between 8 and 16 years, according to a three rotations of 40 students who succeed on the day (from 7:00 to 19:00). An educational team consisting of a director, six teachers, two teachers, a social worker and a cook...


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