Resilience of street children in Kampala Capital City. A case study of Kawempe Division
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Street children are creative and adaptable in response to the very difficult conditions of extreme poverty and violence that characterize life on the streets. The study aimed to explore the unique and dynamic process of resilience among street children in Kampala, Uganda with specific objectives of finding out the individual factors and environmental factors in society that enable the street children to cope with street life as well as identifying the economic opportunities that street children access that make them cope in Kawempe division of Kampala Capital City. The study adopted a descriptive cross sectional design and was purely qualitative to ascertain and describe the unique and dynamic process of resilience among street children. A total of eleven street children were engaged into face to face interviews. The study found that there are individual factors of age, gender, cultural norms and attachment, skills, ability to make random friends and social network, sense of humor and faith in God promote resilience among street children while the environment factors of availability of supportive networks from various organisations, access to education and health services and social network contributed significantly to ensure that they survive on the streets. The study also identified that there were economic opportunities for street children and these included begging, craft making and selling, brewing local alcohol, car washing, participating in campaigns and participating in sports for business. The study recommended that there is need to support and encourage street children serving community organizations to implement initiatives that build resilience among the street children including strategies such as offering programs and services which build upon the children’s social. Emotional and personal competence skills.