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Human Trafficking

Prevalence, Abuse & Exploitation of Street Children

In the first decade of the 21st Century                                                   

Republic of Moldova

Moldova remains one of the poorest countries in Europe despite recent progress from its small economic base. It enjoys a favorable climate and good farmland but has no major mineral deposits. As a result, the economy depends heavily on agriculture, featuring fruits, vegetables, wine, and tobacco.

Economic reforms have been slow because of corruption and strong political forces backing government controls.  [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 Moldova.  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.


Abandon Of Underaged

Regina Pacis Fund

[accessed 21 June 2011]

There are no “street children” in Moldova.  Rather, there are “children of the street”.  A child of the street still has a family, but it is far away, maybe somewhere in the village, the family is very poor, the child quarreled with his family or cannot stand his parents who are addicted to alcohol.  In this case the family is something that the child does not consider as positive, the family does not give the child directions in the system of real values of life; the child does not recognize his family and prefers to stay apart from it; or from time to time the child returns to the family, but remains in a state of conflict with it.

Gazza Supports Emergency Appeal For Moldova's Abandoned Children

Distributed by PR Newswire on behalf of Romanian Orphanage Trust

[accessed 21 June 2011]

"Their life is miserable, just an existence. In the worst cases the orphanages have no hot water, medicines or electricity. The plumbing has broken, toilets are blocked with feces, which pour out into the grounds of the orphanage, windows are cracked and the children are fed on porridge or rice. The children are covered in sores; they live two or three in a cot on mattresses reeking of urine.  In some cases I've seen girls chained by their ankles to the bed at night," Paul continued.


*** 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

[accessed 21 February 2011]

INCIDENCE AND NATURE OF CHILD LABOR - The net primary school attendance rate was approximately 98.0 percent.  According to the government, about 800 children did not attend school; however, press reports indicate that the number is higher, particularly in rural areas.

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 10 February 2020]

CHILDREN - The law mandates government-provided free, compulsory, and universal education for at least nine years. Many inadequately funded schools, particularly in rural areas, charged parents for school supplies. While not illegal, such fees contradicted the government's policies and resulted in some parents keeping their children at home. The government and local authorities provided annual assistance to children from vulnerable families to buy school supplies. The UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) reported that net primary school enrollment was 86 percent and secondary school enrollment was approximately 73 percent, with little difference in the rates of boys and girls.

The situation of children in orphanages was generally very poor. Due to lack of funding, children's institutions had major problems, including inadequate food, "warehousing" of children, lack of heat in the winter, and disease. According to the Ministry of Education, there were approximately 11,500 institutionalized children. Not all institutionalized children were orphans; the number of children entrusted to the government by needy parents or by parents leaving the country to look for work reportedly continued to grow. The government estimated that parents of approximately 20 thousand children worked abroad and placed their children in boarding schools or entrusted them to relatives.

TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS – The country was a major country of origin for women and children trafficked abroad for sexual exploitation and men and children who were trafficked to Russia and neighboring countries for forced labor and begging.

Concluding Observations Of The Committee On The Rights Of The Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 4 October 2002

[accessed 21 February 2011]

[47] While noting the amendment to the Penal Code regarding child beggars, the Committee notes that the negative effects of the current economic crisis and the consequent deterioration in the family environment have resulted in an increasing number of street children in Chisinau and other cities.

Messages from Moldova

November 07, 2004

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

[accessed 21 June 2011]

26% of street children were either disengaged from their families due to abandonment, fleeing domestic violence, were orphaned or had only occasional contact due to poor relationships. All of this group were homeless and lived on the streets in abandoned cars, sewers and with groups of other children in venues provided by their group leaders/protectors.


[Last access date unavailable]

"CHILDREN OF THE STREETS" - PROVIDING A CENTER FOR CHILDREN IN ADUL LUI VODA (2007-PRESENT) - Moldova is one of the poorest countries in Europe, despite recent progress. At least one child under seven is abandoned each day in Moldova, often in the earliest days of life. These children are forced to live on the streets. Other 'children of the street' were either disengaged from their families due to fleeing domestic violence, were orphaned, or have only occasional contact due to poor relationships.

Scotland’s Youngsters And Traveling Fans Win The Hearts And Minds In Moldova

EveryChild, Chisinau, 13th Oct 2004

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

[accessed 21 June 2011]

DETAILS - The young players heard about how the Center provides support for Moldova's street children; facilities like a day-care center, access to education and medical care, as well as social rehabilitation all contribute to the long-term goal of integrating children back into mainstream education and preventing street children from entering institutional care

One Child Abandoned Each Day In Moldova, Says UNICEF

United Nations Children's Fund UNICEF, Central and Eastern Europe Commonwealth of Independent States CIS

[accessed 21 June 2011]

At least one child under seven is abandoned each day in Moldova, often in the earliest days of life, according to UNICEF.  One third of those abandoned by their parents are less than four days old.

Moldova Suffers Disaster By Depopulation

Valentyn Bejan, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies IFRC, 25 May 2005 -- This article first appeared in ‘The Bridge’

[accessed 21 June 2011]

As a result of a decade of exodus, the traditional family is disintegrating: separation and divorce are common and children often end up being cared for by relatives and neighbors, falling prey to violence and exploitation.  The issue of the “feminization” of poverty is also causing concern. Women have fewer economic opportunities than men and they have been leaving out of a desire to better their lives and those of their children.  But in what is still an overwhelmingly matriarchal society, this too often results in broken families and abandoned children.

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