Government is losing street children [Archives:2006/974/Local News]

August 21 2006

SANA'A, Aug. 20 ) The Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor does not know how many street children are in Yemen, according to a ministry official.

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor (MSAL) intends to conduct a number of field studies across the republic to record accurate figures for problem.

The MSAL started a training course for those working with social care houses, orphans and street children. Adel Dabwan, civil defense manager at MSAL, pointed out that these field studies will include the capital, Taiz, Aden and Al-Hodeidah as they are the most highly populated areas in Yemen and they have the most street children.

Dabwan also added that the number of social houses in these four governorates reaches 23, hinting that rural areas lack such houses and there is no intention to expand centers outside of these regions.

The number of street children in Sana'a governorate, according to a previous study conducted by MSAL, there were 15,000 children on the streets. In the mean time, this phenomenon is on increase due to the spread of poverty and more drop-outs from school.

The new field studies will be conducted by the High Council for Childhood and Motherhood and financed by the Arab Council for Childhood and Development, according to Dabwan.