Building the Resilience of Street Children and Youths in Cameroon

Walters Mudoh Sanji - Resilience and the Re-integration of Street Children and Youth in Sub-Saharan Africa


This chapter, which is the core of the book, is comprised of two studies. The first study provides an analysis of the psychological situation of street children and youth in Yaoundé and Douala, while the second one deals with resilience building within a rehabilitation home. The first study was made up of a sample of 508 street children and youths. A comparison between a sample of 254 children and youths of the street (working and living on the street) and that of 254 children and youths on the street (working on the street but living off the street) was explored. Inter-group comparison, correlation, and regression strategies were used to examine the relationships that exist between the variables: automatic thought, resilience, self-efficacy, self-esteem, and Children’s Hope. The second study consists of a sample of 20 former street children engaged in primary education in the Kana Foundation NGO rehabilitation home. A project aimed to boost resilience was introduced in this foundation’s street children and youth rehabilitation primary school education center. A pre-survey was carried out before the project began. After running the project for six months, a post-survey was done. From the data of both surveys, a paired t test was conducted. The results are discussed in terms of the bio-ecological, attachment, and resilience theories. By using the special language introduced by the International Resilience Project, the children had theoretical education and practical integration of the learning approach of resilience built into their daily activities. Details of the methodology have been presented in the appendix professionals who which to explore. Also in this chapter, various categories of street children and youths have been given the opportunity to express their experiences in their own words. In order to ensure their confidentiality, pseudonyms have been used, as opposed to their real names.