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ZAMBIA: Street children find hope at center

Salesian missionaries in Makululu, within the city of Kabwe, Zambia

Salesian center offers shelter, rehabilitation and reintegrating programs


(MissionNewswire) Salesian missionaries in Makululu, within the city of Kabwe, Zambia, reach out and assist vulnerable street children through a project started in 2016. Makululu is a disadvantaged area, characterized by lack of employment, high mortality because of HIV/AIDS infections, a high percentage of separated families, heavy alcohol abuse and extreme poverty. As a result of these issues, many children and older youth are forced to live on the streets.

To provide support, Salesians started a community school for street children and school dropouts. Over the years, Salesians increased their support by adding new educational activities and developing new infrastructure, including a specific center for street children and children at risk.

The center offers shelter, rehabilitation and reintegrating programs for 92 boys, ages 7 to 14. The process of rehabilitation and reintegration depends on the situation of each child and the condition of the parents or guardians. Some of the children can be reintegrated with their families after a few months and continue education at the Salesian school or another school. Others may leave the center to start independent life.

A Salesian missionary said, “Salesians work closely with the families through regular home visits, counseling and offering transformative programs. The goal is always for youth to remain with their families when it’s possible.”

Salesians in Zambia provide a range of social development programs and education to aid poor and at-risk youth so they can have a healthy productive life. Early education helps youth gain a foundation to allow them to later advance to skills training for employment. Basic needs are met along the way ensuring youth focus on their education.

Poverty is widespread in Zambia with 64% of the total population living below the poverty line. For those living in rural areas, the poverty rate rises to 80%, according to UNICEF. Over the past three decades, incomes in Zambia have fallen steadily, and people do not have enough money to meet basic needs such as shelter, nutritious food and medical care.



ANS Photo (usage permissions and guidelines must be requested from ANS) 

ANS – Zambia – Supporting Vulnerable Children in Makululu

Salesian Missions – Zambia

UNICEF – Zambia