The problem of children living/working on the streets is complex. HIV/AIDS has contributed greatly to the problem by placing a significant burden on surviving family members to care for children. While 40% of street children have lost one or both parents, the majority are not orphans but have been sent to the street by a mix of problems including crushing poverty, abuse, no access to education and limited alternatives for meeting their basic needs.
Chisomo strives to offer a safe haven for children living on the street, a place where they can receive shelter, food, clothing and counseling through its programs of prevention, intervention, tracing and reuniting. These services are divided into intervention services (Chisomo Drop-in Shelter and Home) targeting children on the street, and a prevention programme (Chisomo’s Women's Programme) targeting families at risk of having children go to the street.