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Protecting Africa's future: Livelihood-based social protection for orphaned and vulnerable children in East and Southern Africa

Protecting Africa's future: Livelihood-based social protection for orphaned and vulnerable children in East and Southern Africa

Apr 2010

Regional Emergency Office for Southern Africa (REOSA) Policy Brief 1, April 2010

Despite greater access to antiretroviral (ARV) drugs in southern Africa, the current HIV epidemic continues to result in increasing numbers of orphaned and vulnerable children. In many countries in the region, as many as 50 per cent of all orphans under the age of 17 years had parents who died of AIDS-related illnesses. According to bodies like UNAIDS, this level of AIDSrelated orphanhood is expected to remain high until 2030 (UNAIDS, UNICEF, USAID, 2008; see Figure 1). Although noteworthy policy and investment in programmes aimed at responding to these children’s needs exist, too many programmes remain ill-equipped to cater for their needs in a sustainable and cost-effective way. This is partly as a result of gaps in OVC social protection policy and legislation.