Street Children Acquire Professional Skills

Street Children Acquire Professional Skills

John (not his real name) was picked from Kampala streets by social workers during a community outreach. Five boys were found sleeping in their place of residence commonly known as depot. At sight of the social workers, two boys fled for safety thinking they were under siege for arrest. Surprisingly, all the four boys were sniffing fuel and smoking marijuana. The two boys who remained hardly understood what happened because they were highly intoxicated with drugs.  Social workers noticed this immediately on their arrival because the smoke and smell swirling around pointing to a wrong thing happening.  When the two boys noticed that the two people visiting them seem to be harmless, they slowly came back. Fortunately, the boys who had run away weren’t as intoxicated as their colleagues. The social workers talked to them and accepted to follow them up to UCC the next day.

The following day, only two boys came to the Centre namely, John and Musa (not his real name) asking to meet Stella and Gabriel, UCC social workers. They were taken through the assessment and filling the forms before officially recruited into the organization. Basing on their situation, they needed one week of daily reporting to ascertain their seriousness on joining their chosen fields of study namely, motor vehicle mechanics for Musa, and plumbing for John. The two boys continuously reported every day until one week was over. This proven to the social worker that the boys were committed to join the training. Afterwards, the boys were enrolled into the programme by accommodating them in the hostel.

During the course of training, it was discovered that one, john had been chased from home by his Father asking him to go and get money from child support organizations. It was also discovered that the Father was a drug addict involved in crimes.  It was also learnt that the mother separated from the Father and there is no communication between the two and the child. Social workers were grateful to learn that the two boys were coping well with their studies.

Musa was a total orphan whose parents died from HIV and AIDS. He grew up with his grandmother who later died. Since there was no one to cater for him, he ran to the streets. Unlike John, Musa was very weak and was put on intensive care and treatment for infections that were on and off. After Musa recovering from the infections, he escaped back to town. UCC worked with Uncles in the City streets to follow him up until he was arrested and taken to Kampiringisa National Rehabilitation Centre for incarceration. Apparently, Musa is undergoing rehabilitation at the facility. However, John continued with his training and this year 2021 he wrote his final examinations in the Plumbing course. He wants to be a future engineer to support himself, Father, family and the community.  After Exams, John has been resettled back to his Father’s house in one of the slums in Kampala. What is unique, he has been given responsibilities at the Centre to oversee other children with similar circumstances to ensure that they cope without serious problems. Musa welcomed this engagement and is showing a lot of optimism of becoming successful in whatever he is doing. He reports three days in the week to attend to his services. The other two days, he undergoes counselling as a way of consolidating his behavioral achievements which we do not like to lose. Apparenting Social workers have resumed building rapport with the Father to make sure he is brought on board. Initially, it was hard to have his cooperation until the son himself stepped in and everything started flowing well. He promised to cooperate with the organization to ensure his child becomes more responsible. UCC thanks all stakeholders right from community members, uncles, instructors, social workers and security personnel for their invaluable support during this process.

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