The exact number of children living and working in urban streets worldwide is estimated at over 100 million. Most of these children are excluded from educational and socio-economic activities. There are many non-governmental organization (NGO) programs around the world which have been working to rehabilitate and reintegrate street children back into society. This Capstone paper addresses the following question: What models currently exist for working with street children and what makes them effective or not as social change strategies? Qualitative data and research was collected from two sources, case studies and field research. Over twenty case studies from around the world were reviewed from various sources. Field research was also conducted with street children in Brazil for six months. Five models for working with street children were identified from this research as follows: meeting basic needs, reinsertion to family or home, education and development, reinsertion to socio-economic activities, and prevention and community empowerment. Most of the case studies demonstrated NGO involvement with several different models. The challenges faced by those who work with street children are many, but through years of experience and practice, it has been predominately NGOs worldwide that have identified key philosophies and practices that are effective in reaching and positively assisting street children. The five models for working with street children presented in this paper represent some of the key program strategies that have been adopted by NGO projects today worldwide. NGO programs currently working with street children are the most likely beneficiaries of this research paper. It is extremely important that different programs are able to learn from each other, find out what other organizations are doing, and what has been effective or not in their program strategies. The research and conclusions drawn in this paper could inform current practice and methodology and assist NGOs with strategic planning and evaluation of their own programs.
Otte, Nicole R., "A study of international models for working with street children" (1999). Capstone Collection. 544.