Mapping the Status of Street Children in Selected Cities in Penisular Malaysia

Bidang Kajian : Kanak-kanak

Pelajar/Pengkaji Oleh: Amirah Bt Mohamad Fuzi

Alamat Emel: zqa190007@siswa.um.edu.my

Tarikh: 04/01/2022


Abstrak Kajian


The objective of this paper is to identify who are the children street children in the context of Malaysia, specifically how the street children came to be. The focus of this paper is on-street children living in the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur, specifically in the area of Chow Kit Road. This paper adopted definition of street children proposed by UNICF that is “any girl or boy who has not reached adulthood, for whom the street has become his or her habitual abode or source of livelihood, and who is inadequately protected, supervised or directed by the responsible adults.” This study used both qualitative and quantitative approaches to collect data. The tool used for the qualitative approach was an interview, it was used to collect information from stakeholders namely the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL), Ministry of Federal Malaysia, Ministry of Home Affairs (MOHA) and Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development. The target group were street children and teachers-cum-administrators of Buku Jalanan ChowKit, and Sekolah Bimbingan Jalinan Kasih (SBJK). While the quantitative approach used a questionnaire to capture information from street children. This study involved 303 street children aged between 10 to 17 years old. Of the 303 respondents that returned the questionnaires 42% were aged 10 to 12, 33% were ages 13 to 15 and 24.4% ages 16 to 18. Interestingly, none admitted living on the street, but 60% confirmed that were living with their parents and the remaining either one parent, sibling, guardian or friends. Meaning the street children walk the street but they do have a home to return to. The study also found 75.9% of father and 64% of mothers of these children were working. In term of education, only 68.6% have had schooling experience, about 39% secondary school and 30% primary school. Reasons for not attending schools or continue education main answers were “not enough money” that related to an inability to pay a fee, books, transportation, pocket money followed by no documentation. Rather alarming about 90% of these children said they receive no assistance in form of accommodation. The majority affirmed (>70%) basic assistances were lowly provided, like transportation health, school fee, and other related assistance for schooling. Feedback on education was also gathered from two volunteer teachers at Buku Jalanan ChowKit and Sekolah Bimbingan Jalinan Kasih. In the former school, it is run by NGO, provision for school basic needs were funded by charity organisation and funding from the government is zero. The latter school catered only for street children, it received government funding under the supervision of MoE. According to the Department of Social Welfare eligibility of funding of children for welfare services for whatever reasons must be accompanied by documentation. Meaning children with no documentation are not eligible to receive social welfare benefits from the government. Overall, this study discovered needs of the street children are simple, they needed basic school assistance, basic living assistance and continuous motivation. 

 

Keywords: Street children, Home, Drop-out, Education, Malaysia, Welfare, Parents

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