Challenges of young mothers raising children in urban slums of Accra, Ghana: A qualitative study

  • Portia Nana Ama Brempong University of Ghana
  • Kingsley Saa-Touh Mort University of Ghana
  • Eunice Abbey University of Ghana
Keywords: challenges, slums, young mothers, parenting, qualitative study


The United Nations (UN) Programme on Human Settlements and the Voluntary National Review (VNR) report of Ghana on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) indicates that as of 2020, about 8.8 million people lived in slums. Despite these alarming statistics, sparse literature exists on the challenges young mothers encounter when raising their children in such environments. The study explored challenges young mothers encounter in raising their children in Ghana’s slum dwellings. A descriptive qualitative design of twenty (20) purposively selected young mothers were interviewed using a face-to-face approach. Audo recorded data was transcribed and analysed thematically. Four (4) themes emerged under this study: 1) financial challenges associated with their inability to afford early childhood care/education, 2) struggle with maintaining discipline of children, 3) reliance on self and herbal medication, and 4) turf wars among slum teenage mothers. Considering these challenges experienced by slum teenage mothers, there is the need for increased focus on improving the well-being and prospects of both young mothers and their children within urban slums.