Educating Working Street Children

project partner
location:Kabul, Afghanistan
funding period:2004

summary:The problem of children working in the urban informal sector without access to education is a growing one in Afghanistan’s war-ravaged economy, although reliable figures are hard to come by. Boys tend to work on the street, mainly as vendors of various goods, while girls usually work at home sometimes producing goods for their brothers to sell. Save the Children UK has found out, through informal consultations with the children, that working street children’s priorities are education (at a time and cost they can afford), vocational and skills training, and support for starting up small-scale economic activities.

Save the Children UK runs four resource centres for working street children in Mazar-i-Sharif and plans to open six new centres in Kabul. Each centre provides training in literacy, numeracy and life skills to about 500 children who work on the streets. In addition, the children also take part in recreational activities at the centres. Recently they have introduced vocational skills training. Through the work of the centres, 300 children returned to mainstream education last year.

The centres have the potential to provide a model for support to the poorest and most vulnerable children.

Trade plus Aid’s donation in 2004 will provide:

-         £1500 for clothing and footwear (during winter) for about 100 children

-         £1200 to pay for one resource centre’s rent for six months

-         £500 to refurbish a resource centre

-         £1000 to employ two teachers for six months

-         £1000 to provide medical kits for the centres

-         £1000 to provide utilities for the resource centres including heating during the winter

For more information on the work of Save the Children, UK please visit:


Trade plus Aid would like to thank Paula Opfer and David Jones, Australia for their help in raising funds for this project. 

Mr Patrick Fennell of David Jones meets HRH Princess Anne




Afghanistan has been famously described as one of the worst places in the world to be a child. Families have endured more than two decades of conflict, years of severe drought, endemic poverty, and instability caused by having to flee violence or hunger

Save the Children January 2004


Typical images of Afghanistan children doing carwashing and market work.

copyright:Stuart Freedman/Network Photographers