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Human Trafficking

Prevalence, Abuse & Exploitation of Street Children

In the first decade of the 21st Century                                   'Ivoire.htm

Republic of Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)

Côte d’Ivoire is the world's largest producer and exporter of cocoa beans and a significant producer and exporter of coffee and palm oil.

Despite government attempts to diversify the economy, it is still heavily dependent on agriculture and related activities, engaging roughly 68% of the population. Since 2006, oil and gas production have become more important engines of economic activity than cocoa.

Since the end of the civil war in 2003, political turmoil has continued to damage the economy, resulting in the loss of foreign investment and slow economic growth. GDP grew by nearly 2% in 2007 and 3% in 2008. Per capita income has declined by 15% since 1999.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]


CAUTION:  The following links and accompanying text have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast).  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspect(s) of street life are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring how children got there, how they survive, and how some manage to leave the street.  Perhaps your paper could focus on how some street children abuse the public and how they are abused by the public … and how they abuse each other.  Would you like to write about market children? homeless children?  Sexual and labor exploitation? begging? violence? addiction? hunger? neglect? etc.  There is a lot to the subject of Street Children.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.


Check out some of the Resources for Teachers attached to this website.


EASMO - Open Air Socio-educational Action Team

Children and Youth in action

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 5 May 2011]

DESCRIPTION OF THEIR WAY OF LIFE - They live in groups or alone and sleep on cartoons spread on the ground or under market stalls and huddled against each other to protect themselves against the cold weather … they eat remnants from restaurants … they bathe in backwater and wash their clothes there … they treat themselves with medicines exposed in the street or using traditional treatment … the younger ones are victimized by the older ones and use the former to commit reprehensible acts such as stealing, drug sale and pedophilia


*** ARCHIVES ***

The Department of Labor’s 2004 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

U.S. Dept of Labor Bureau of International Labor Affairs, 2005'ivoire.htm

[accessed 30 January 2011]

INCIDENCE AND NATURE OF CHILD LABOR - Children also shine shoes, run errands, watch and wash cars, sell food in street restaurants, and work as vendors or in sweatshop conditions in small workshops.  Children have been found working in small businesses, tailor and beauty shops, and manufacturing and repair shops.  There are also large numbers of street children in the country, particularly in Abidjan.  Children are also found working in prostitution.

Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 7 February 2020]

CHILDREN - There were an estimated 215 thousand street children in the country, including 50 thousand in Abidjan. Some children were employed as domestics and were subject to sexual abuse, harassment, and other mistreatment by their employers.  Because of the political-military crisis, many families, including displaced families, relied on their children to work as street vendors and bring money home. A forum of 15 NGOs worked with approximately 8 thousand street children in training centers, similar to halfway houses. The NGOs paid the children a small subsistence sum while teaching them vocational and budgeting skills. Many street children, however, were reluctant to stay in training centers where they earned no money and were subject to strict discipline.

Concluding Observations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 8 June 2001

[accessed 30 January 2011]

[57] While welcoming the establishment of a national program for the social settlement and resettlement of street children, the Committee remains concerned at the increase in the number of children living in the streets.

Information about Street Children – Côte d’Ivoire [DOC]

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 5 May 2011]

The inter-ministerial, multi-disciplinary national committee specially established a few years ago to assist children in the streets is sadly rarely visible, let alone active or operational.

Children and Youth in Action

[access information unavailable]

MAIN DIFFICULTIES ENCOUNTERED - Lack of willingness on the part of the children to return to their families … Parents fail to visit their children at the AKWABA center … Lack of financial assistance … Minors freed from prison prefer to live in the street.

The Carrefour Jeunesse (or Youth Crossroads) of Grand Bassam

Children and Youth in action

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 22 September 2011]

WAY OF LIFE - Some sleep in the night by market watchmen … some sleep on busy cinema paths under the protection of the "bellas" … another group that plays poker and consume drugs is found in Mossou … others also play poker in the swamps behind the Carrefour Jeunesse center and sleep at the center.

Côte d’Ivoire: A Country in Distress, An Opportunity to Act

United Methodist Women’s Action Network, Action Alert, June 2003

[accessed 5 May 2011]

Roughly 200,000 children throughout the Côte d’Ivoire live on the street.  According to government statistics, 57% of school-age children in Côte d'Ivoire attended primary school in the 2000-2001 academic year.  Sixty-seven percent of male children are enrolled in primary school, compared with 50% of female children.  The current violence in the country has severely affected children's access to education and some schools have closed down completely.

Crime and Society

Dr. Robert Winslow, A Comparative Criminology Tour of the World, San Diego State University

[accessed 5 May 2011]

CHILDREN - There are large populations of street children in the cities. The Fraternite Matin newspaper reported in 2000 that the number of street children in the country was 200,000, of which 50,000 were in Abidjan. Some children are employed as domestics and are subject to sexual abuse, harassment, and other forms of mistreatment by their employers, according to the AIDF, the BICE, the Ministry of Family, Women, and Children's Affairs, and press reports.

When A Sentence To Jail Can Be A Sentence To Death

UN Integrated Regional Information Networks IRIN, Dimbokro, 17 May 2005

[accessed 10 March 2015]

Dozen or so minors being held, most of whom are street children.  During a short guided tour, it became clear that many detainees were being held without trial, in extended provisional custody.  A female street vendor of unlabeled medicine had been in custody for 2 years; a 12-year-old boy was thrown in prison a year ago for smoking cannabis and had never seen his parents or a lawyer since

Stop The Use Of Child Soldiers In Côte d’Ivoire

Amnesty International, AI Index: AFR 31/003/2005, Date: 18/03/2005

[accessed 10 October 2012]

Click [here] to access the article.  Its URL is not displayed because of its length

[accessed 28 November 2016]

There must be swift disarmament, demobilization, rehabilitation and reintegration (DDRR) of child soldiers. It must include specific arrangements for children, ensuring health care, education, skills training, family-tracing and reunification, and responding to the particular needs of girls

UNICEF Calls For Protection Of Vulnerable Children In Côte d'Ivoire

United Nations Children's Fund UNICEF Press Release

[accessed 5 May 2011]

In Abidjan, the country's economic capital, UNICEF is supporting reception centres providing relief materials and medicines for internally displaced people in the hardest-hit areas. A centre for street children in Adjamé that is currently oversubscribed with children following the imposition of a curfew has also received supplies. There is an estimated 10,000 street children in Abidjan and their situation during the crisis is of particular concern.

Planning Intervention Strategies for Child Laborers in Côte d’Ivoire [PDF]

Creative Associates International, Inc., Planning Intervention Strategies for Child Laborers in Côte d’Ivoire, Final Report, 2002 -- Prepared for: United States Agency for International Development, Bureau for Economic Growth, Agriculture, and Trade, Office for Education, Africa Bureau

[accessed 30 January 2011]

[page 61]  8. STREET CHILDREN - A large number of street children are found in the cities of Côte d’Ivoire working as street shoe shiners, errand boys, car watchers and car washers, and selling in the streets and markets. According to the Fraternite Matin newspaper, there are 200,000 street children in the country. There are 50,000 street children in Abidjan alone. Some children work as domestics. It is reported that these children are often brutally abused both physically and emotionally by their employers. In 1996 the government initiated steps to reduce the number of street children. One of the steps included holding parents legally and financially accountable for their abandoned children. However this was never implemented.

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