Street Kids

19 04 2008

By Lubabalo Dada

I used to feel sorry for street kids, thinking that they have no other option but to beg. And after having interviews with some street kids I thought that these guys are really suffering. Most of them said they use money to buy food and contribute to their families.

They are telling us lies. They are not hungry as one may think. These guys have food and a warm place to sleep. They are just pretending to be helpless. I used to volunteer at Eluxolweni Shelter, and would recognise some faces from the street. These guys eat and at a particular point in time they are allowed to get out of the shelter and come back later. Some go to town to beg and use the money to buy cigarettes.

Those who leave the shelter do so because they do not want to be controlled. So they stay in streets looking helpless. The stories that they tell about them being helpless are exaggerated, they want people to feel sorry for them.