Salaam Sage

Two books from Sage, India on street children, their plight, and prospects.

FROM STREET TO HOPE: Faith Based and Secular Programs in Los Angeles, Mumbai and Nairobi for Street Living Children by  Neela Dabir and Naina Athale of the TISS, Mumbai  attempts to sketch a holistic picture of the street child phenomenon across the globe. Globally, street-living children are the most fluid population of vulnerable children. They are conspicuous yet subsist on the fringes of the marginalized. This book attempts to sketch a holistic picture of the street child phenomenon across the globe. 

The book incorporates empirical data from a cross-cultural study of this phenomenon in three mega cities—Mumbai, Nairobi and Los Angeles—and some of the best practices developed by faith-based and secular organizations to help street-living children. These data include global estimates, analysis of the causative factors, occupations of these children, as also the resulting problems. The book also gives new insights into the impact of state policies to support secular and faith-based organizations, and the way social service is practised by such organizations in India, Kenya and USA. 

The authors take the readers through the social construction of the street child phenomenon over the years by weaving socio-political, cultural and historical perspectives in understanding the circumstances surrounding them. 

336 pages in hardcover, Rs 500.  ISBN:9788132105138 

The second title is FROM ECSTASY TO AGONY AND BACK: Journeying with Adolescents on the Street by Barnabe D'Souza of the Don Bosco Research Centre in Mumbai.

This book  presents the journey of adolescent street drug-addicts—from psychological brokenness resulting from family disruption to the process of mending; from abuse, trauma and vulnerability to building up of self-esteem, talents and personality; and finally to the process of moving off the streets. 

Based on the author’s experience of working with the street children for over 26 years, the book explores the universe of street children interestingly, yet empathetically. The author discusses laws and policies affecting street children; root causes and their effects on them and their families; and the various stakeholders like agencies, employers, and institutions involved in their care and guidance. 

The participatory action research discussed here views children as their own psychologists, creating meanings for themselves out of their own experiences and understanding. By taking ownership of their actions, street children begin to structure their moving off the streets, facilitating their rehabilitation and reintegration into society, thereby improving their status. 
252 pages in paperback, Rs 250.  ISBN: 9788132107033