In Ouagadougou, the capital city of Burkina Faso, street children were first reported to exist in the late 1990’s. Initially, the number of such children was less than 100; however, a local NGO reported in 2009 that the total number of such children had reached 8,063. It is clear that the number of street children has increased during the 2000’s, despite the efforts by NGOs to enhance their services. I do not deny that poverty causes street children to exist, but other factors contribute as well, such as social changes and the increased complexity that comes with a globalized society.
This paper therefore aims to explain the paradoxical phenomenon in the interaction between street children and NGOs.
I first review the notion of street children. Although nobody paid attention to the plight of street children in Africa in the 1960’s, the circumstances changed in the 1970’s, when international aid agencies started to focus on children’s rights, aiming to promote them. Children who lived on the street seemed to have no rights, and needed to be distinguished from those living in more favorable living circumstances.
Based on that background, I focus on the way that street children survive making use of the activities provided by the NGOs.
Such activities indicate that aid agencies work toward the socialization and normalization of street children. Although NGOs have made an effort to support them, the number of such children increased in absolute terms in the late 2000’s compared with the 1990’s. I present three case below to explain that phenomenon.
The first case focuses on the interaction between a street child known as “Al” and NGOs. For three years, Al stayed both on the street and in NGO-provided accommodations. However, he shuffled between the street and his village, and his transportation was covered by an NGO. This case raises an important question: are street children the result of social problems caused by the lack of children’s rights? This case shows that street children sometimes interpret the context of NGOs, adapting or shifting their lives according to their convenience.
NGO programs not only address children’s survival on the street, but also tie in with socializing programs, such as food for education. The second case I look at shows the interaction between street children and NGOs from the perspective of how the children deal with such programs. It must be clarified that street children who took part in the programs did not do so for education, but for food.
The last case focuses on street children who had escaped from an NGO-provided accommodation, as it was not necessarily a good environment for them. It can be argued that the street itself supplies enough resources for such children to survive.
In my conclusion, I make the analysis that NGOs’ activities to protect street children in fact provide them with the facility to survive on the street, leading such children to exploit those services. To sum up, NGOs that try to improve the lives of children by addressing the social problems that they face probably lead to the perpetuation of the existence of street children.
The main purpose of this paper is to provide a case study of street fashion in Horie with special focus on the interrelationship between spatial regeneration and urban culture which young people produce.
First, I examine the varieties of shops observed in Horie in 1964, 1997, and 2003 and trace the changes in land use during the period. Second, I present and analyze the data which came from an interview I carried out with the editor of Cazi Cazi, a local fashion magazine in the Kansai. Third, I examine the interview data which young passersby in Horie provided. The informants consist of 14 young people.
The main points of the paper are :
(1) I have discussed the change of land use in Horie using Figs. 2 to 4 and concluded that Horie spatially transformed itself to a new fashionable area, especially between 1997 and 2003.
(2) Based on the interview with the editor of Cazi Cazi, I have implied that young people would not like to learn about the latest styles from ordinary fashion magazines but to learn directly from the real situation on the streets.
(3) I have reconstructed on the basis of the narratives collected from young people in Horie how young people dress themselves and how fashion is produced and reproduced there. Young people observe carefully others’ appearances and evaluate or criticize them accordingly. If others’ fashions are judged to be ‘cool’ enough for them, they are imitated, causing a slight adjustment of the current fashion. In a similar way, young people sample styles in magazines and tailor them to match themselves.
(4) Young people improve their fashion by combining clothes and accessories in a unique way, thus suggesting alternative styles of fashion for others in Horie. These practitioners form and renew the street fashion in Horie in a dynamic manner.
(5) Street fashion gives a unique character to Horie, which demands that youths dress more smartly than others. It makes Horie different from other major shopping districts.