This qualitative study represents a first attempt of scientific analysis of children in street situations in the Republic of Moldova;
The main five results of the study indicate that:
1. For many children, the first experiences with the street take place at a very early age, when they are of three or four years old. These are not known by children’s parents or by professionals;
2. Most of the children constantly run away from placement centres and from their families where they are taken by representatives of social services and/or police;
3. Parents’ alcohol abuse is most often associated with domestic violence, child abuse and lack of child supervision. These are the main reasons children leave their homes;
4. The children have little information about how they can avoid labour exploitation and sexual abuse situations;
5. Professionals have little knowledge about the specifics of children in street situations. For some, this translates into fear or reluctance towards the children.
Amongst recommendations, the study highlights the importance to ascertain the voice of the child, the involvement of children in the decisions regarding their lives including gaining their consent about their placement, raising awareness, professional training and the link between children in the street and migration.