Street Children Student Advocacy
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Street Children Student Advocacy (SCSA) is a student campaign established by M11B students from Jose Rizal University. The objective of the team is to state the alarming condition of street children nowadays in order to improve the health, welfare and quality of life of street children and to give them a brighter future ahead. Moreover, in order to have a glance on what it feels like to be on the streets, fighting for survival.
Beforehand, let us first define the term "street children". How does one acquire the term? According to UNICEF, a street children is “any girl or boy who has not reached adulthood", for
whom the street has become
her or his habitual abode and/or sources of livelihood, and who is inadequately protected, supervised or directed
by responsible adults. In layman's term, a street children refers to children who works or sleeps on the street. Most street children are involved in gang activity, deprived of education, and victims of substance abuse resulting to being trapped in a vicious cycle of pain and misery.
Studies show that street children may be classified into two groups. The first group is ‘Children of the street’, which refers to children who are homeless, and streets in urban areas are their source of livelihood, where they sleep and live. The second group is ‘Children on the street’, who work and live on the streets in the daytime but return back home at night where they sleep, although some of them sleep occasionally on the streets. Nevertheless, there is no clear distinction between the two groups as they often differ from their common definition: some ‘children of the street’ may still have links with their families and some ‘children on the street’ often sleep on the street.
What causes the phenomenon of street children?
Economic stress and poor conditions that families face due to industrialization and urbanization. Due to the recent changes in industrialization and urbanization, some families could not cope up with their needs in order to survive. It is somehow related to poverty but poverty cannot stand alone as the only reason behind the phenomenon of street children.
The team conducted an interview, regarding the issue that made them put this advocacy into action. The interviewees stated the alarming condition of the street children that needs an immediate solution. According to them, street children are one of the most vulnerable groups of urban poor. They face difficulties while living in the streets, and they also develop their own ways to overcome such difficulties.
Street children face difficulties in providing themselves with good sources of food, clean drinking water, health care services, toilets and bath facilities, and adequate shelter. They also suffer from absence of parental protection and security due to the missing connection with their families. In addition, there is a lack of any kind of moral and emotional support.
Since there is a very little chance of survival on the streets, street children tend to do things that are not justifiable such a These children may have lost their way because their community or family did not guide them. Despite this fact, street children can still be considered as victims and not criminals. Street Children should receive the same amount of love and respect as much a normal child receives.
The team came up with various programs such as feeding program and medical missions in order to help the street children. Those programs would not be possible without the help of the sponsors and those kind-hearted people who have shared their blessings to help the street children. You can be one of those genuine hearted people by giving donations and helping us raise funds for them.
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