Thematic working group 5: Community interventions in favour of street children

  • Moderator: Ms Florence Vandendorpe
  • Speakers:
    • Mr Hermann Hessou (Benin)
    • Ms Sow Gouagna Traore (Mali)
  • Discussant: Mr Adelin N’situ

Street children are a user group with special needs. Their constant mobility, their problems at the confluence of social and personal dynamics, their special relationship with adults and authorities make them particularly vulnerable. In this session, we will look at two initiatives which, each in its own way, have tried to provide these children with appropriate socio/psychological support. We will see how, to this end, they have reviewed the clinic’s usual frameworks to adapt them to the particular needs of these young patients.

We will explore the challenges faced by such interventions, particularly in terms of their interactions with public security agents, but also with traditional healers, other sectors like education, or community-based structures or associations. To what extent can these actors be involved in the support provided to these children? Indirectly, we shall question the modalities of a harmonious articulation between modernity and tradition, mental health and respect for religion.