Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 13th 2014 Contents A9
Tuesday, May 13, 2014 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
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- SILKY SATIN
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"When I realise that nothing could
be done...is just God...I talk to her
and told her to study school and be
interested in the positive things in life.
Man goes nowhere, and there is a mil-
lion man around," he said.
"Everybody wants what is best for
their child but it is also what goes on
in the household that accounts for
that. I used to try and track she down
and have people looking for she."
He said his daughter ran with com-
pany---a former prison inmate---that
no decent parent would want their
children spending time with.
But the father said he took an inter-
est in all his children and often visited
their school and disciplined them
"You have to work with them and
realise that everybody have their life,
and work with them.
"You need to show them---and not
because they doing something wrong
you cut they tail," he said.
He said children learn from the
examples that parents set for them.
"Children does pick up on things
and you don t realise they watching
you. I love my children and minding
them," he said.
His expectant daughter is now 19
years of age and living with the same
STREET SCENES from Page A8
'Children learn from examples
that parents set for them'
Children run away because of physical and
emotional abuse at home says social worker
Emmanuel, who has a masters degree in
mental health, said incest, physical,
psychological and emotional abuse are some
of the reasons a child might leave the home.
Emmanuel has worked with
children/teens/adults with autism spectrum
disorders, Downs syndrome, behavioural
disorders, personality disorders, special needs
and other mental health problems.
"It's a myriad of things. The children run
away because they are abused at home, or
they are not understood, and friends
understand them. The conditions are not
livable and they might think if they are on the
streets they think they have a better chance
and said, 'So I will run away.' It could be
psychological, emotional or physical."
Emmanuel said in T&T most children are
fortunate children and may have a relative
they can go to stay with.
Others are not so lucky.
"Some run away from home and people turn
a blind eye. It is time we wake up," she said.
"The children run away and they live on the
street and their survival instincts kick in. They
think, 'I am already worth nothing' and their
self-worth is destroyed and they need to
survive and do whatever. Some turn to
stealing, some (become) drug mules and some
get hooked on drugs. They turn to alcohol and
make themselves more vulnerable."
Emmanuel said research reveals that the
runaway children hang out in high-traffic areas
where somebody would feed them.
"They would go to places like Port-of-Spain
where people are able to disappear."
Emmanuel agreed that sometimes it's
parents who put their children on the street:
parents who are addicted to drugs or in need
of money might use their children to support
"There is a lot of research to support that,
and it is a fact of life. They need money and
they are starving or they are drug addicts.
They might exchange their child for a fix," she
Emmanuel said there are two types of
The grooming paedophile lures the children
in small ways with food or money before
"There are paedophiles who offer them
sweets, food and try to gain their trust before
they actually start the abuse."
These paedophiles might interest the
children in paying for their school fees or
buying them nice things and the children feel
obligated to do whatever they want. They
groom the children first before acting on their
victims, she said.
"There are those instances where
paedophiles are opportunistic and there is no
grooming. They see somebody who looks
vulnerable with a disability and choose their
opportunity to strike," she said.
Warning signs that your child may have been
Withdrawal from friends or family, don't want
to play, keep to themselves, quiet, stays away
from affection or are the opposite and
aggressive. Language changes and behaviour or
a "Hot" mouth and has secrets.
In smaller children, they play and they mimic
what their life is.
Family members can:
Try and talk to the child, look at how
conditions are at home, are people working?
As a teacher: Talk to the parent(s) or it could
be others involved. Don't jump to conclusions.
Talk to somebody such as an experienced
counsellor, police officer, pastor, someone to lead
you in the right direction, someone you can
SOCIAL WORKER'S PERSPECTIVE
A group of women working at the corner of Cornelio and Roberts streets in Woodbrook. Many children run
away from home as teenagers and end up on the streets trying to earn a living through prostitution and
other illegal activities. PHOTO: KRISTIAN DE SILVA
"The children run
away and they
live on the street
kick in. They
think, 'I am
is destroyed and
they need to
survive and do
turn to stealing,
drug mules and
some get hooked
on drugs. They
turn to alcohol
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