Street children in Mexico - Help street children in Mexico through Mexico Child Link

Street children
Many Street children have a disability


Links to street children projects worldwide


Poverty in Mexico - Mexico factfile


Reasons for homelessness in Mexico


photograph album of the children and the project


Mexican orphanages
street children with learning  disability - abandoned and unwanted




Street children - What are street children?

Definition of a street child
Street children statistics in Mexico

  • UNICEF has defined three types of street children: Street-Living, Street-Working, Street-Family.
  • Street Living Children: children who ran away from their families and live alone on the streets.
  • Street Working Children: children who spend most of their time on the streets, fending for themselves, but returning home on a regular basis.
  • Children from Street Families: children who live on the streets with their families.


Definition of street children.

"Street children" is a term often used to describe both market children (who work in the streets and markets of cities selling or begging, and live with their families) and homeless street children (who work, live and sleep in the streets, often lacking any contact with their families). At highest risk is the latter group. Murder, consistent abuse and inhumane treatment are the "norm" for these children, whose ages range from six to 18. They often resort to petty theft and prostitution for survival. They are extremely vulnerable to sexually transmitted diseases including HIV/AIDS. An estimated 90% of them are addicted to inhalants such as shoe glue and paint thinner, which cause kidney failure, irreversible brain damage and, in some cases, death. ( Casa Alianza)

Origin of street children

This has its roots in the issues of poverty and income distribution in Mexico and Latin America. There has been migration of campesinos from the countryside to the cities since the major industrialization of Mexico began in the 1940s. The rural situation has become worse since Mexico joined the NAFTA Free Trade Agreement in 1995.

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Mexican street children facts & statistics

  • Mexico City has 1,900,000 underprivileged and street children. 240,000 of these are abandoned children. (Action International Ministries)
  • In the central area of Mexico City there are 11,172 street children. 1,020 live in the street and 10,152 work there. (City of Mexico/Fideicomiso, Report, 1991)
  • In 1996, the Inter-American Development Bank and UNICEF estimated there were 40 million children living or working on the streets of Latin America--out of an estimated total population of 500 million.
  • Begging - Some 20% of the children survive by begging, 24% by selling goods, and others by doing subcontracting work. ("Over 5 Million Child Laborers in Mexico", Xinhua: Comtex, 14 September 2000, citing National System for the Integral Development of the Family (DIF), "Prevention, Attention, Discouragement and Eradication of Childhood Labor")
  • 8-11 million children under the age of 15 years are working in Mexico. (US Dept of Labor, Sweat and Toil of Children, 1994, citing US Dept of State, Human Rights Report, 1993)

Pangaea -extensive list of organizations working with street children


The Mexico Child link trust works with abandoned and orphan children with learning disability. Many of them are ex street children who have been rescued from children's jails, reform schools and other institutions in the Puebla area.


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