The Reality In Santa Cruz
The problems faced by the kids who live on the streets in Santa Cruz are very real. Many kids are stuck in a trap of drug addictions and delinquency which few have chosen to be in.
The majority of the children on the streets come from broken families. Many have suffered the death or abandonment of a parent, most often the father. Many have run from abuse, exploitation or just a lack of family love. Often at a very young age kids are burdened with heavy responsibilities such as earning money, helping raise younger siblings and helping to run the home. The liberty offered on the street seems like a bright alternative to the responsibilities and expectations of the home. Many never have a chance to feel love and security or have a chance to enjoy a normal childhood, parental guidance and regular schooling.
Many start using drugs as young as 8 years old. It becomes a way of life. The drugs commonly used are glue, marijuana, cocaine paste, cocaine, pharmaceutical drugs and alcohol. Among children the inhalants are the most popular. Drugs serve a definite purpose - to numb cold, fear and loneliness.
Any effective solution must look at other important problems in society that affect the lives of the street kids such as nutrition, health, housing and family relationships. Training, education and increased public awareness and involvement are important.
For a closer look at El Jordan and it's ministry with the street kids in Santa Cruz, please take the time to view this video.