Kaya in the News
A World of Difference Spirit and Mind -- Texas A&M Foundation
Ending Child Homelessness in Bolivia Worldview -- Chicago Public Radio
The Bolivian Street Children Project ReVista -- Harvard Review of Latin America
Local doctor helps 'street children' find new home Lincoln Journal
Boston Pediatrician Cares for Bolivia's 'Disposable Kids' Crosswalk.com
Learn more about
children on the streets
in this book, written
by Kaya founder
Dr. Chi Huang.
Huang, C-C, & Huang, Kristin. (2008). Caring for abandoned street children in La Paz, Bolivia. Archives of Disease in Childhood, 93, 626-627.
UNICEF reported in 1986 that the number of street children ranged from 30 to 170 million worldwide.1 Despite the large number, there is a relatively small amount of literature on this neglected population. The international community knows very little about the geographical distribution of the children and the demographics worldwide. UNICEF categorises street children into four groupings. "Children at risk" are defined as children with particular risk factors that make them susceptible to spending a portion of their time on the streets. "Children on the streets" are children that occupy a portion of their time on the streets but nevertheless have a place of residence. "Children of the streets" spend a majority of their life on the street with minimal adult supervision or oversight. Finally, abandoned street children constitute the most vulnerable sector of the street children population and are solely on the streets without any adult supervision.
Click here for abstract.
Huang, C-C, et al. (2004). A comparative analysis of abandoned street children and formerly abandoned street children in La Paz, Bolivia. Archives of Diseases in Childhood, 89, 821-826.
Aims and Methods: A comparative study of abandoned street children and formerly abandoned street children was conducted in La Paz, Bolivia, representing the first such comparative assessment. Between August and December 1997, all abandoned street children in La Paz, Bolivia, who were willing to participate (n = 124) were interviewed repeatedly at night using standardised questionnaires to collect information on family history, demographics, socioeconomics, drug use, and physical/sexual abuse. The same questionnaires were administered to all former abandoned street children who chose to enter a local orphanage (n = 35).
Results: The persistent street children differed greatly from those who entered the orphanage, most markedly in their higher risk of police abuse (95% versus 38%), absence from school (84% versus 19%), engagement in robbery (26% versus 4%), paint thinner use (88% versus 41%), alcohol use (58% versus 12%), and a serious medical problem (53% versus 20%). The risks for street children increased rapidly with age.
Conclusions: A cascade of adverse outcomes afflicts the vast majority of abandoned street children in La Paz, which cumulate with age and diminish the likelihood of successful rehabilitation through lasting placement in an orphanage or residential home. Informed by these findings, the investigators operate a home for abandoned street children in La Paz.
Click here for abstract.