Relationship between Psychosocial Health and Drug Use among Street Children in Starehe Sub-County, Nairobi County Kenya

  • O'gallo Brian Ochieng


Life in the streets is not easy. It has immense negative effects on the psychosocial health of street children which could result in substance use. This study set out to examine the relationship between psycho-social health and drug use among street children in Starehe Sub-County, Nairobi County Kenya. This study was based on the Problem Behaviour Theory (PBT). This study adopts the correlational research design. Data were collected from 100 street children. These were sampled using cluster and simple random sampling techniques from a target population of 30,000 in the Starehe Sub-County of Nairobi County. In addition, data was collected from purposively sampled four officials from the Starehe Children‟s Office, eight officials of NGO/FBO operating in the sub-county, 1 sub-county administrator, and 4 ward administrators from the Sub-County. The qualitative data collected using questionnaires were analyzed using descriptive statistics like mean, percentage, and frequencies, as well as inferential statistics such as Pearson correlation and regression analysis. The findings obtained were presented using charts and tables. The qualitative data collected using interviews were analyzed thematically. The findings were then presented in prose. The findings show that psychosocial health affected drug use among street children. Pearson correlation showed that there was a significant relationship between drug use and psychosocial health, r=0.503. The findings show that the measures put in place to enhance the mental health of street children made had significant influences on their drug use. There is also a need to provide street children with homes to reduce exposure to stressful conditions that could lead to mental health problems. Regular free mental healthcare clinics should also be availed for all street children. Raising awareness and sensitizing the street children on the negative implications of drugs is also important. There is a need to strengthen behaviour counseling, support groups, and sober social networks for street children. The government and non-governmental organizations should come up with programs for supporting access to counseling services. Some of the street children should also be trained to prop up their abilities to offer peer counseling services to their colleagues.


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eISSN: 2709-2607