AIDS ORPHANS

Published on AVERT, not dated.

Worldwide, it is estimated that more than 15 million children under 18 have been orphaned as a result of AIDS. Around 11.6 million of these children live in sub-Saharan Africa. In countries badly affected by the epidemic such as Zambia and Botswana, it is estimated that 20 percent of children under 17 are orphans – most of whom have lost one or both parents to AIDS. Even with the expansion of antiretroviral treatment access, it is estimated that by 2015, the number of orphaned children will still be overwhelmingly high.

As the tables below show, the number of orphans in some sub-Saharan African countries exceeds half a million, and, in some countries, children who have been orphaned by AIDS comprise half or more of all orphans nationally. Number of orphans due to AIDS, alive in 2007 … 
… Variations within countries:

As the number of orphans varies between countries, so it varies between different regions within those countries. Particular areas may have higher or lower percentages of orphans, largely depending on the local HIV prevalence rates. There can also be substantial differences between rural and urban areas. The age of orphans, however, is fairly consistent across countries. Surveys suggest that overall about 15% of orphans are 0-4 years old, 35% are 5-9 years old, and 50% are 10-14 years old.

An increasing problem:

The scale of the orphan crisis is somewhat masked by the time lag between when parents become infected and when they die. If, as expected, the number of adults dying from AIDS rises over the next decade, an increasing number of orphans will grow up without parental care and love. (full text).

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