Psychosocial needs, stressors and survival strategies of adolescent street children in Mzuzu, Malawi: A human development approach

Ncube, Angela (2016-03)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 2016.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: When a developing country embarks on a pathway towards modernization and urbanization, one form in which poverty expresses itself is in the outgrowth of street children. In Malawi, the number of street children increases every day. The goal of this study is to gain a better understanding of the needs, stressors and survival strategies of street children in Mzuzu, Malawi. To achieve this goal, the objectives formulated are: to explain adolescent development within the context of a human development approach; discuss the phenomenon of street children, their needs and related stressors; describe their survival strategies; and to analyse and interpret data on investigation of the needs, stressors and survival strategies employed by adolescent street children in Mzuzu, Malawi. A qualitative research approach was used together with an exploratory and descriptive research design in order to provide a detailed description of the phenomenon being studied, namely street children. The sample for the study was selected by means of purposive sampling. Twenty-five adolescents between the age of thirteen and fifteen living in/and or working in the streets of Mzuzu were involved in the study. Data was gathered by means of a semi-structured interview schedule which was administered during individual interviews. The main recommendations of the study are related to improvement of households’ capacity to care for their children. In addition, recommendations suggest support at grassroots level (family) as a way of mitigating the exodus of children into the streets. It is also recommended that policy should look at the issue of street children as a child rights and a child protection issue.

AFRIKAANS OPSOMMING: Wanneer ‘n ontwikkelende land die pad na modernisasie en verstedeliking betree, is die voorkoms van straatkinders een manier waarop armoede na vore kom. In Malawi neem die getal straatkinders daagliks toe. Die doel van die studie is om beter begrip te ontwikkel vir die behoefte, stressors en oorlewingstrategieë van straatkinders in die stad, Mzuzu, Malawi. Om hierdie doel te bereik is die doelwitte wat geformuleer is: om adolessente ontwikkeling binne die konteks van ‘n menslike ontwikkelingsbenadering te verduidelik; die verskynsel van straatkinders, hulle behoeftes en verbandhoudende stressors te bespreek; hulle oorlewingstrategieë te beskryf; en om data oor oorlewingstrategieë van die straatkind in Mzuzu, Malawi soos verkry deur ‘n ondersoek, te ontleed en interpreteer. ‘n Kwalitatiewe navorsingsbenadering is tesame met ‘n verkennende en beskrywende navorsingsontwerp gebruik ten einde ‘n gedetailleerde beskrywing van die verskynsel wat bestudeer word, naamlik straatkinders, te verskaf. Die steekproef vir die studie is geselekteer by wyse van ‘n doelbewuste steekproef. Vyf-en-twintig adolessente tussen die ouderdom van dertien en vyftien, wat leef, en/of werk in die strate van Mzuzu, is by die studie betrek. Data is ingesamel met behulp van ‘n semigestruktureerde onderhoudskedule wat geadministreer is tydens individuele onderhoude. Die vernaamste aanbevelings van die studie hou verband met die verbetering van huishoudings se vermoë om hulle kinders te versorg. Verder, stel aanbevelings ondersteuning op grondvlak (gesin) voor as ‘n manier om die uittog van kinders na die strate te verminder. Dit word ook aanbeveel dat beleid die kwessie van straatkinders as ‘n kinderreg teen kinderbeskermingskwessie in oënskou moet neem.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/98834
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