Invisible Children: A Case Study Of Street Children Education In Pakistan

Shahnawaz Shahnawaz

Abstract


The chaotic issue of street children is rampant across the globe especially in developing nations like Pakistan. The presence of around 150 million street children worldwide highlights the gravity of the situation, out of which 1.2 million are living in Pakistan. The extreme poverty, unequal distribution of wealth, high inflation and large families push children to the street. The need for survival compels these children to engage in hazardous labor, begging, trash collection, prostitution, and drug addiction. They receive no protection from state and faces dangerous risks on streets. However, the state is under the obligation to provide protection as well as free and quality education to all. At present, there is no as such particular policy develops regarding the education of these children. Hence, they remain deprived of their fundamental right to education. So, the study focuses on the current status regarding the education of street children; educational interventions carried out by the government of Pakistan and NGOs; and challenges experienced by NGOs regarding such interventions in the country. This research is based on case study methodology and a qualitative in its nature. The study concludes that deficient in implementing and translating existing policies into practice, inadequate laws, funds, and public institutions response combined with public detest makes these children deliberately invisible to state. In addition to that, the government is also hampering the work of NGOs providing free education to street children. The study recommends that the Pakistani government should develop tangible policy, laws, and funds for the education of these children. In addition, the government should facilitate NGOs working to fulfill the educational needs of street children. With the help of education, street children will be able to understand risks, challenges and prepare themselves to counter while living and working on the streets.


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