For more than 20 years Chance for Children has been strengthening street-connected children and their families in Ghana by providing a chance to build a better future.
IN 2020 CHANCE FOR CHILDREN STRENGTHENED
OVER 1,550 STREET-CONNECTED CHILDREN THROUGH DIFFERENT PROGRAMS, 69 STREET-CONNECTED YOUTH AND OVER 250 FAMILIES
More than 50 children have been reintegrated into their families and 7 young adults have completed an apprenticeship or middle school.
44 children were prevented from joining the streets and their families supported by providing supervision of our social workers and stakeholders in the various communities.
In Kumasi and Tamale members of communities benefited from 32 workshops on different topics focusing on hygiene, health education, child development, sanitation and child rights, among others.
Over 50,000 meals were shared with street-connected children, and 12 hygiene workshops were held in Accra, Kumasi and Tamale between mid-March and November 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic caused unprecedented hardship. Many street-connected children and their families lost their livelihoods. Some children were forced to leave their homes. Schools closed for 9 months. At CFC, we had to cease street work and close our Drop-in Centre in Accra for several months but were able to quickly shift focus with a tailored approach to the most urgent needs, in accordance with official guidelines.
In collaboration with our partners, we carried out a food-sharing programme providing over 50,000 meals in Accra, Kumasi and Tamale. We ensured that all children in our Homes and those reunited with their families had possibilities to keep learning. Despite the restrictions on movement, we continued reaching out to the children and their families through a “Hotline” and regular check-in phone calls. We held hygiene workshops, installed handwashing stations and produced over 2,000 fabric masks that were distributed to our kids, families and staff.
In mid-September our Drop-in Centre re-opened in Accra, and in October our street workers returned to support children on the streets of Accra, Kumasi and Tamale. Our primary focus was to maintain contact and reinforce their relationship with all children and families, based on an individual and regular assessment and preparing children for the possibility of the re-opening of schools.
As schools re-opened, we launched a new project in which we reintegrated street-connected children back into their families and school. We were also able to support them in their re-integration into a learning environment.
STREET-CONNECTED CHILDREN IN THE GREATER ACCRA REGION
The 2011 “Census on Street-connected Children in the Greater Accra Region”* conducted and published by Departmentof of Social Welfare manifested a great concern about the raising numbers of street-connected children in Ghana.
At the time, more than 60,000 street-connected children lived in the Greater Accra Region. They left their families in search of money and work. Over half of them were girls. The census estimated that 5% of the street children were born on the street. 40% dropped out of school, and 60% have never visited one.
In 2014 local NGOs estimated that there are over 90,000 street-connected children in the Greater Accra Region.
The population of the street-connected children is growing and the main reasons “identified for this high rate of homelessness include poverty, disintegrated families and divorce, and the quest for freedom from parental control”**.
* “Census on Street-connected Children in the Greater Accra Region”, Department of Social Welfare, 2011
** “Factors that Promote Resilience in Homeless Children and Adolescents in Ghana: A Qualitative Study”, Kwaku Oppong Asante, Department of Psychology, University of Ghana, Legon, Accra, Ghana