2021 proved to be another challenging year for street children’s rights worldwide, with the continuing effects of Covid – and governments responses to it – creating more restrictions with which street-connected children simply cannot comply.
Perhaps as a result of the global situation, our Legal Atlas tool, developed with Baker McKenzie, saw a dramatic increase in users in 2021, with 51,113 unique visitors over the year. This is an increase of 130% compared to 2020. Many of the search terms directing this traffic referenced ‘curfew’, ‘runaway’, ‘citizenship’, and ‘age of consent’ for particular countries.
Thanks to A1WebStats, we were also able to track some of the public organisations using the Legal Atlas for the first time.
Such rich data gives us fantastic insight both into who uses the Atlas, and why. It is encouraging to see so many universities and research centres – 713 from 86 different countries – represented, as we know that ensuring street-connected children are included in research is vital if policy makers are to create lasting positive change for street children. Similarly, 7 different national broadcasters visited the Atlas in 2021, creating the opportunity to reframe narratives around street children.
Another positive sign is the number of national and regional governments – 26 in 20 countries, including two prime minister’s offices – and city/county councils (102 across 16 countries) who visited the site. Making the laws affecting street children easily accessible to these decision makers is important in demonstrating where good practice can be seen, as well as where progress can be made. This is also seen in the 33 different law firms, organisations working within the judicial system, and regional and international human rights organisations/bodies who accessed the Atlas.
Alongside this, the 65 different hospitals and medical centres, and 11 different police departments in four countries, who used the Legal Atlas in 2021 suggests that it is also an important tool for frontline work with street-connected children.
We are incredibly grateful to A1WebStats for providing this data and allowing us to track how our Legal Atlas has been used in 2021 and look forward to using this information to shape our plans for the Atlas going forward.