By Marisa O. Ensor (eds.)
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Additional resources for African Childhoods: Education, Development, Peacebuilding, and the Youngest Continent
In the past, domestic servants sold cooked food and convenience items. Filtered water sold in plastic bags is the preferred options nowadays. Ghana’s proximity to the equator means that temperatures are quite high. Given the heavy dependence on public transportation that is not always reliable because of faulty vehicles— which do not have air conditioning—and serious traffic problems, the demand for drinking water while on the road is significant. Pedestrians and passengers have historically depended on hawked water.
In many instances, they were required to stay in the shops until their employers released them. They were usually late and exhausted by the time they arrived in school, and often slept though classes. Some of the student domestic servants went to school without breakfast or lunch, and were usually too exhausted at night to study. The consequences of these living conditions were numerous, including poor performance in school and minimal educational attainment. Almost all the school-going children were enrolled in classes much lower than their age-appropriate grades; even at ages 13 or 15, the highest level of education for most of the participants was the fourth grade.
During the study, the research team began with researcher-led interviews and focus groups; however, many of the narratives included in this chapter originated in conversations and group discussions initiated and conducted by the participants themselves. We chose qualitative methods for central analysis to illuminate and reify the heterogeneity of lived experiences of street children in urban Tanzania through the intimate details of biography. Street Children Despite the extent to which—both geographically and temporally—street children have been an issue of concern and intrigue, the term “street child” remains contested (Muchini and Nyandiya-Bundy 1991; Panter- Brick 2002; Mulindi 2011).
African Childhoods: Education, Development, Peacebuilding, and the Youngest Continent by Marisa O. Ensor (eds.)