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Human Trafficking

Prevalence, Abuse & Exploitation of Street Children

In the first decade of the 21st Century                                                                                                                        

Republic of Guinea

Guinea possesses major mineral, hydropower, and agricultural resources, yet remains an underdeveloped nation. The country has almost half of the world's bauxite reserves. The mining sector accounts for more than 70% of exports. Long-run improvements in government fiscal arrangements, literacy, and the legal framework are needed if the country is to move out of poverty. Investor confidence has been sapped by rampant corruption, a lack of electricity and other infrastructure, a lack of skilled workers, and the political uncertainty because of the death of President Lansana CONTE in December 2008.

The Guinea franc depreciated sharply as the prices for basic necessities like food and fuel rose beyond the reach of most Guineans. Dissatisfaction with economic conditions prompted nationwide strikes in February and June 2006.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]


CAUTION:  The following links and accompanying text have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Guinea.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspect(s) of street life are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring how children got there, how they survive, and how some manage to leave the street.  Perhaps your paper could focus on how some street children abuse the public and how they are abused by the public … and how they abuse each other.  Would you like to write about market children? homeless children?  Sexual and labor exploitation? begging? violence? addiction? hunger? neglect? etc.  There is a lot to the subject of Street Children.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.


Check out some of the Resources for Teachers attached to this website.


International Rescue Committee (IRC) - Durable Solutions for Separated Children

[access information unavailable]

They came from Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire and Sierra Leone during the intense conflicts, to the relative safety of Guinea, but left without their parents or caregiver, or became separated during the chaos of flight. Over the years IRC staff have been able to identify thousands of these vulnerable children, living in the refugee camps, some living on the streets of Guinean towns, and many living in Guinean families. With active family tracing, we have been able to reunite more than 4000 of them with their families.


*** ARCHIVES ***

The Department of Labor’s 2004 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

U.S. Dept of Labor Bureau of International Labor Affairs, 2005

[accessed 8 February 2011]

INCIDENCE AND NATURE OF CHILD LABOR - Children are also found working on the streets selling cheap goods for traders, carrying baggage, or shining shoes.

CURRENT GOVERNMENT POLICIES AND PROGRAMS TO ELIMINATE THE WORST FORMS OF CHILD LABOR - The Ministry of Pre-Education has overall responsibility for the implementation of a USD 70 million World Bank Education for All Project that aims to promote universal primary schooling, build schools, and improve the quality of education.  The program focuses on girls and rural students, and includes street children.

Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 9 February 2020]

CHILDREN - The International Rescue Committee and UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) reported that children living in foster families often did not receive adequate food, shelter, and clothing and were compelled to work in the streets, sometimes as prostitutes, for their subsistence.

SECTION 6 WORKER RIGHTS – [d] Many young Muslim children sent to live with a Koranic master for instruction in Arabic, Islam, and the Koran worked for the teacher as payment. Children often were sent from rural areas to Conakry to live with family members while they attended school. If the host family was unwilling or unable to pay school fees, the children sold water or shined shoes on the streets, and the host family took the money in exchange for their room and board or simply used the child as a cheap source of domestic labor.

Concluding Observations Of The Committee On The Rights Of The Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 29 January 1999

[accessed 8 February 2011]

[31] The Committee is concerned about the growing number of children who, owing inter alia to rural exodus, poverty, and violence and abuse within the family, have to live and/or work on the streets and therefore are deprived of their fundamental rights and exposed to various forms of exploitation. The Committee recommends that the State party undertake research on the issue of children living and/or working on the streets as a basis for adopting appropriate programs and policies for the protection and rehabilitation of these children and the prevention of this phenomenon

The IRC in Guinea

International Rescue Committee IRC, 1 April 2009

[accessed 8 February 2011]

1 April 2009  The International Rescue Committee has ended its program in Guinea after nearly 18 years of operation. During that time the IRC assisted tens of thousands of refugees from neighboring Liberia, Sierra Leone and Ivory Coast who had fled war and civil strife in their homeland. In the mid-1990s, Guinea hosted as many as 800,000 refugees and was the scene of one of the largest humanitarian responses in the world.  Today, peace agreements and elections in Sierra Leone and Liberia have brought relative stability to the region and led to the closure of the refugee camps.

The IRC in Guinea

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

Guinea, one of the world's poorest countries, has accommodated nearly one million refugees from the civil wars in neighboring Liberia, Sierra Leone and Ivory Coast. While most Sierra Leonean refugees have been repatriated, refugees from Liberia and Ivory Coast continue to live in Guinean camps due to continued instability in their home countries.

Refugee, by any other name, might still face danger

Caryl Clarke, York Daily Record, Arlington  VA, Aug 20, 2004

[accessed 20 May 2011]

The final witness, also protected by confidentiality, testified on the situation in Guinea for people with mental retardation.  "If Jarno Malik is returned, he will join the street children who live under many illegal activity, illegal sales of marijuana," the man said. "He will find himself with those street youth who will make him use or sell marijuana."  But, don't police arrest such criminals, Senkus asked. Yes, the man said, but it is so difficult to sort through the street gangs that police tend to arrest everybody and place them in prison.

Determining the Best Interests of Unaccompanied and Separated Children: Lessons from Guinea [PDF]

International Rescue Committee, September 2007

[accessed 20 May 2011]

 [page 10] OVERALL BACKGROUND TO THE BID PROCESS IN GUINEA - In 2003 the IRC organized an assessment into the situation of the remaining identified Sierra Leonean separated children, for whom family tracing continued to be unsuccessful. This precipitated the start of a BID process for durable solutions, including procedures and criteria for submission and consideration of cases. The situation for the Sierra Leonean separated children that remained in Guinea became particularly critical as the official repatriation of the vast majority of Sierra Leonean refugees was completed by UNHCR in December 2004. It therefore became necessary to design mechanisms to respond to their specific needs and identify safe durable solutions for these children and youth on a case by case basis.

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