According to the United Nations, the annual urban growth rate in Sub-Saharan Africa is almost 5 percent, twice as high as in Latin America and Asia. It also has the world’s largest proportion of urban residents living in slums, which today are home to 72 percent of urban Africa’s citizens representing a total of some 187 million people.
Ghana is not an exception to this trend, as the country has experienced an increase in population growth as more and more people move from the rural areas to the urban cities seeking for jobs and better lives. According to the World Bank, in 2014, approximately 37.4% of people who live in Ghana’s urban regions lived in slums. The country’s urban community has grown from approximately 36.4% in 1990 to approximately 56.7% in 2019, making it one of the most urbanized countries in Africa.
It is estimated that there are over 5.5 million people living in slums in Ghana. A slum is defined by the UN as “a contiguous settlement where the inhabitants are characterized as having inadequate housing and basic service.”
The explosion in urbanization have resulted in some families and children living in squatter settlements, that are prone to insecure tenure, high unemployment rates and unsanitary conditions. These slums do not have adequate sanitation, shelter, and lack any basic urban amenities services. Many of these families and children sleep and work in the streets or seek shelters in these slums. In addition, the lack of adequate sanitation increases the risk of the children getting diarrhea and diseases like cholera.
According to StreetChildren.Org, economic poverty plays a major role that causes children to migrate to the streets. In addition, other social factors such as parental deaths, parental neglect, violence, and abuse of children at home or within communities, urbanization, sexual, physical or emotional abuse, HIV / AIDS, being forced into criminal activity, being rejected from their family for so called “moral” reasons, mental health issues, substance abuse, and sexual orientation or gender identity that cause children to live or work in the street.
Future of Africa (FOA) is one of the few organizations working to address the issue of homeless and street children in Accra, Ghana. Bread of Life International share the values of FOA mission and that is to provide street residents with holistic wellness, technical education, and entrepreneurial skills to transform their lives, their families and their communities.
Bread of Life International through its Community Flagship Event Program collaborated with Future of Africa and provided food and drinks to the homeless and street children in the Slums behind the Opebea House in Accra. We also got the opportunity to visit the slums where the children and youth live. We wrapped up our visit to FOA’s shelter for some of these children.
It was wonderful to see how some of the children’s have been removed from the streets and recognizing that the child, for the full and harmonious development of his or her personality should be given an opportunity to grow up in a family environment, in an atmosphere of happiness, love and understanding. You can learn more about Future of Africa
Bread of Life International plans to continue to strengthen its relationship with Future of Africa by supporting its feeding initiatives, so they can provide food to more children and vulnerable people living in the streets and in the slums. Join us in the fight to alleviate and reach out to those who are need the most help.
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