family on the move
Yesterday afternoon, September 11, the first Integrated Meeting on the care of people living on the streets in Africa opened in Dar-es-salaam, Tanzania, organized by the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant Peoples, in collaboration with Tanzania's Episcopal Commission for Migrants and Itinerant Peoples.
In a statement the organisers said the main objective of the five-day conference is to promote initiatives and programs in local churches for the benefit for people who live on or from the road/street, this includes: street women and children, people of no fixed abode, transport workers and those responsible for road safety.
A rough calculation of street children in the world is about 150 million, 40% of whom are homeless and 60% work in the streets to support the family. More than a billion people on the planet do not have adequate housing and 100 million have no housing.
Every day, approximately 50 000 people, mostly women and children, die because of inadequate shelter, polluted water and lack of hygiene. About 70 million women and children live in cramped environments so that the smoke of cooking damages their health.
During the meeting, crucial issues will be faced such as the fact that women, even in Africa, forcibly or voluntarily, are victims of new forms of slavery, and the situation of young children and adolescents in the street that comes from the contrasts existing at a household, social and cultural level in the continent. Among the many causes that force women and children to live the street, are: poverty, family violence, tribal and civil conflicts, superstition, organized crime and exploitation.