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The Talibé Phenomenon

Senegal suffers from the biggest phenomenon of street children in the world. Sociocultural Issues  subject children to inhumane conditions of semi-slavery, physical and psychological violence and an uncertain future.


Learn more about this sad phenomenon

The biggest phenomenon of street children in the world takes place in Senegal. Boys are handed over by their parents to religious leaders, to live and be educated in the Koranic Schools (Daaras) to become Islamic leaders. 


However, the reality of these children is one of semi-slavery, exploitation, begging and severe physical and verbal aggression, which leave scars on the skin and soul. Many also face sexual violence, unhealthy conditions, sadness and hopelessness. Most Talibés children have to beg for their own food, living on the margins of society, insecure, abandoned and lacking in love. Those who survive the reality of inhumanity imposed on them since childhood, reach adolescence psychologically and socially scarred and, not infrequently, as a consequence, tragically emerge into the world of drugs and violence.


International human rights organizations, such as Human Rights Watch, speak of around 100,000 Talibés boys, 30,000 of them in the Senegalese capital, Dakar. These boys, generally between the ages of 5 and 18, are most often recruited from poor families in the interior of the country or even from neighboring countries to Senegal.


“In the Daaras we wake up early, around 5:00 am and we learn the Quran until 7:00 am. Then we go out and ask for alms, the marabout charges us the sum of 2000f per child”.

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