Poverty, Child Labor, and Hope: The Relationship between Hope and Perceived Social Support in Children Working in Street Markets in TRC2 Region of Turkey

Children (Basel). 2020 Jul 14;7(7):78. doi: 10.3390/children7070078.


Diyarbakır and Şanlıurfa (TRC2 Region) are the cities within the provinces of Turkey that have a high prevalence of poverty with an associated high child population. Due to the poverty in the cities of Diyarbakır and Şanlıurfa, this study investigated children working as a carrier in six purposefully selected districts, street markets, with the aim of providing social support for them to look forward to the future with hope. The research was conducted in 2019 by using questionnaires through face-to-face interviews, to cover all children in selected street markets within the scope of the full sampling volume. The data were analyzed using a structural equation modeling method. According to the results, 61.2% of working children are students, but most of them do not go to attend school; 8.7% of working children are the children of the Syrian refugees. Children work an average of 4.3 days a week and 8.6 h a day, with an average income of USD 1.6/day. As a result of the analysis, it was shown that the children received the most social support from their schoolmates (r = 0.428) to have hope in the future. This result shows that it is compulsory to include children in the education system. In this context, it is recommended that the financial contribution of children to their families should be paid by the state within the scope of social assistance and solidarity. Besides, strengthening social awareness and providing solidarity would contribute to the solution of the problem. The data obtained from this research could be used in studies and policies, to develop the concept of hope for combating poverty in regions with similar socio-economic characteristics. This research is the first of its type conducted on this issue in Turkey.

Keywords: TRC2 Region; Turkey; child labor; hope; poverty; social exclusion.