Street children, Romania

Street children, Romania

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Credit: PATRICK LANDMANN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Street children, in Bucharest, Romania, around a fire. There may be several thousand Romanian street children, some as young as ten. The causes of this social problem include poverty, violence, and alcoholism, caused in part by the chaos that followed the downfall of the Ceausescu regime in 1989. Many of these children have ended up on the street to escape neglect or abuse from their families or orphanage workers. They support themselves by begging, stealing, and prostitution, though some receive support from charities.

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