General Information

Country Status

 

Location

Nepal is Landlocked country, located in the South Asia bordering by China in the North and India in the East, West & South.

Area Occupied

0.3% of Asia & 0.03% of World, covering 147,181 sq. km.

Capital

Kathmandu

Administrative Division

5 Development Regions, 14 Jones, 75 districts having 3915 Village Development Committees (VDCs) and 58 municipalities.

Total Population

26,494,505; 51.5% Female and 48.5% Male ( National Census 2011)

Per Capita Income

340 US $

Human Development Index (HDI) Ranking 

157th out of 187 countries (2011)

Length and Width

Length : 885 kms (East-West)
Width : About 193 kms (North-South)

Life Expectancy

68 years

Population under 18 years

44.4%

Population below Poverty Line

25.4%

Adult Literacy

Total 71.6% : Women 44.5% - Men 56.6% (2011)

 

Child Issue in Nepal

 

According to UNESCO, only 7 out of 10 children in Nepal enrolled in grade 1 and reach to grade 5, and more than half of them quit school before reaching the lower secondary (up to grade 8) level. According to the Nepal Child Labor Report-2010, about 1.6 million children in Nepal are working and 621,000 children among them are in high risks job. Similarly, about 165,422 children are working as domestic worker.

 

Although there is no reliable data on children living/working in the street of Nepal, UNICEF estimates around 5,000 children are living/working in the streets of Nepal. A research of National Alliance of Organization Working for Street Children (NAOSC) estimates that there are 1200-1500 children living in the streets of Kathmandu in which 8% of them are infected by HIV/AIDS (CWIN, 2010). And shockingly 85% of street children are sexually abused according to ILO and approx. 400 children come on the street every year (CWIN, National Report).

 

Children in the Street

 

UNICEF refers to 'street children' as children for whom the street, more than their family, becomes their real home.Children living on the street are children who may have been abandoned or escaped from the family due to their abusive, dysfunctional, poverty-stricken families and now are living or working in the street. They work, live and sleep in the streets, often lacking any contact with their families. These children are at high risk of murder, constant abuse and inhumane treatment. They often resort to petty theft and prostitution for survival. Life of the children in the street is hazardous as they might have a risk of being sexually abused, exploited, addicted to drug & infected with HIV, which is widely prevalent among them.

 

Child Sexual Abuse is a huge problem in Nepal. There is very limited information available about this issue as few studies have been conducted in the areas of child sexual abuse and exploitation. Due to the malpractices and stigmatization, majority of cases go unreported. Furthermore, sexual abuse of boys is completely ignored and Nepalese society has not realized the magnitude of its effects in the lives of children. It is because there is almost no awareness and regulations or laws on the different non-contact forms of sexual abuse not only by adults but also by children themselves.

 

UNICEF has categorized street children into three types:

 

Street Living: Children who sleep in public spaces without their family. Among these three categories, the reality of street living children is dismal. According to UNICEF, "Street living children are children who may have lost their families through war or illness, or have been abandoned because they had become too much of a burden, or else ran away from their abusive, dysfunctional, poverty-stricken families and now live alone on the streets." They work, living and sleeping in the streets, often lacking any contact with their families. These children are at highest risk of murder, constant abuse and inhumane treatment. They often resort to petty theft and prostitution for survival," reports UNICEF. 

 

Street Working: Street working children are children who spend most of their time working in the streets and markets of cities, but may or may not return home on a regular basis. 

 

Street Family: Children from street families are children who live on the streets with their families. Some street children spend so many years on the street that they start families and bring up the next generation on the street as well.

 

 

>> Factors influencing children leave their family

 

>> Problems faced by street children