The phenomenon of street-involved children continues to plague cities in both low- and high-income countries. While measures are needed to eliminate this undesirable situation urgently, it is equally important to understand the lives of these children, particularly their health and access to essential services to aid their well-being. Given their difficult living conditions, most street-involved children rely significantly on their social networks to get by. This chapter offers empirical evidence of how structural (group membership) and cognitive (trust in neighbours) social capital influence the association between access to healthcare and health status of street-involved children (aged 12–17 years old) based on cross-sectional data from Ghana. Approximately 71.8% of respondents rated their health in unfavourable terms with many of them having limited access to healthcare. Only 38.1% of the children trusted the people around them, while 27.5% joined some social groups. We found that trust in neighbours (B = 5.704, p < 0.000) and access to healthcare (B = 2.199, p < 0.01) were positively associated with the health status of the children. Trust in neighbours positively modified the association between healthcare access and health status (B = 0.199, p < 0.001). We discuss the findings within the broader discourse on social epidemiology and social protection and draw implications for the health-related well-being of children in especially difficult circumstances.
|Title of host publication||Handbook of Children’s Risk, Vulnerability and Quality of Life|
|Editors||Habib TILIOUINE, Denise BENATUIL, Maggie K. W. LAU|
|Publication status||E-pub ahead of print - 30 Jul 2022|
|Name||International Handbooks of Quality-of-Life (IHQL)|