The number of street children in Uganda is rising, according to organisations working toward resettling the juveniles.
Kampala is receiving the bulk of these children – with Jinja and other major towns slowly catching up.
The organizations now want government to come up with deliberate policies to unite these children with their families.
It is common sight to see street children at traffic lights and other busy spots in Kampala’s Central Business District.
Many of these are seen as a nuisance with various attempts unnecessarily done to remove them from the streets.
George Ssekalala, the communications manager of African Hearts Community Organisation – a charitable organisation resettling street children told The Nile Post the number of children running to streets is rising – although this trend can easily be reversed.
The organisation unites street children with their families. Most of the cases are referred to them by the Police and Probation officers.
There are currently no credible statistics on the number of street children in Uganda. Some sources have put the figure at about 10,000.
Poverty and lack of proper care from parents and guardians are cited as leading push factors for run-away children.
A 2014 Human Rights Watch report titled; “Where do you want us to go” concluded that children living on the streets in the capital, Kampala, and throughout Uganda’s urban centres face violence and discrimination by police, local government officials, their peers, and the communities in which they work and live.