There are concerns over an increasing number of street kids in Lae city. Many ofthese children have become petty criminals and disliked by members ofthe public.
Bet as EMTV’s Lae based journalistoEdwin Fidelis, found outthey are rejected by family and society caught up in economic hardship andthey are not going away.
More than one hundred children who comes from troubled homes are housed atthe “Haus Clare Children’s Centre”. Their ages ranged from ten to thirteen. The children are fed, educated and given a place to sleep. Some ofthem have livedthere for more than five years.
The children’seen onthe street today are results of a deeply rooted problem. No school fees, broken families and abusive parents are just some ofthe factors drivingthem ontothe streets.
Social Wokers like Stanley Timai of Salvation Army Lae Street Ministry School have been trying to help givethese children a second chance.
Betthe problem isn’t just aboutthe children left onthe streets to fend for themselves;the problem is parent’s inability to supporttheir families.
Many earn a living by collecting empty bottles and scrap metals. thers become shop-lifters and pick-pockets.
Various arms ofthe national government and ther stake holders have acknowledgedthe problem in many urban towns and cities, butthey have done very little to address it.
What worries organisation’s likethe Salvation Army is that not allthese children will make it back totheir families or have a happy life after being released back tothe communities. And withthe lack of support facilities,they are concerned that more children might end up onthe streets.
Edwin Fidelis, National EMTV News – LAE