Children smiling

Children Affected by AIDS

HIV & AIDS have had an especially devastating effect on children across Africa. More than 13.3 million children under the age of 17 have been orphaned by AIDS, the overwhelming majority of them in sub-Saharan Africa. Still countless others are left vulnerable as a direct result of the devastation wreaked on families and communities. Young women – often the first to be pulled out of school to help care for dying mothers and raise families of orphaned siblings – are particularly vulnerable, increasing their chances of contracting HIV. 

That’s where community-based organizations come in. They are mobilizing to identify and support these children by providing food, uniforms and school fees, HIV testing and counselling, helping to build homes and tend gardens, and ensure that girls have an equal chance to attend school, learn how to protect themselves from the virus and flourish, especially when they are looking after their siblings in ‘child-headed households’.

This is the generation that will be leading Africa out of the epidemic. To find out more about how grassroots organizations are supporting children orphaned and made vulnerable by AIDS, please visit the Where We Work section.

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