Orphans in Sub-Saharan Africa: The Crisis, the Interventions, and the Anthropologist

  title={Orphans in Sub-Saharan Africa: The Crisis, the Interventions, and the Anthropologist},
  author={Bright B. Drah},
  journal={Africa Today},
  pages={2 - 21}
Response to the orphan crisis in sub-Saharan Africa has focused mainly on mobilizing and distributing material resources to households with orphans. Only a few anthropologists have interrogated the frameworks and values on which the projects for orphans are based. In this paper, I analyze the trends in foster-care research in Africa and suggest that current ethnographic data on foster-care practices do not adequately reflect the changing context of fostering in Africa. There is a need for fresh… Expand
Reconsidering the orphan problem: the emergence of male caregivers in Lesotho
The emergence of a small but growing number of male caregivers who are responding to the needs of the extended family is examined, which reinforces the strength and resilience of kinship networks even when working against deeply entrenched ideas about gendered division of domestic labor. Expand
Orphanhood Prevalence, Living Arrangements and Orphanhood Reporting in Lesotho, Malawi and Zimbabwe
This study explores the relationship between orphanhood prevalence, living arrangements and orphanhood reporting. Research on children’s orphanhood status and living arrangements is well established,Expand
Applying community-based participatory research to better understand and improve kinship care practices: insights from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone.
The article discusses challenges faced and lessons learned and highlights how the research process enabled action and advocacy initiatives at different levels-leading to an increase in support and policy attention for children living in kinship care. Expand
Applying community-based participatory research to better understand and improve kinship care practices : insights from DRC , Nigeria and
While the principles behind community-based participatory research (CBPR) are firmly established the process of taking CBPR with children and youth to scale and integrating it into the programming ofExpand
‘Older Women’, Customary Obligations and Orphan Foster Caregiving: The Case of Queen Mothers in Manya Klo, Ghana
The research findings suggest that queen mothers have become the primary caregivers of orphans, even though they do not have the wherewithal to provide for these orphans. Expand
Funding orphanages on donations and gifts: Implications for orphans in Ghana
Abstract Sub-Saharan Africa is experiencing a growth in the number of children who need formal alternative care. One of the principal factors contributing to this is orphanhood. While most orphansExpand
The Production and Reproduction of Kinship in Charitable Children’s Institutions in Uasin Gishu County, Kenya
BackgroundThe negative impact of institutionalization on children’s development and well-being has led to a global recommendation for deinstitutionalization. In countries with weak infrastructure andExpand
The Effect of International Adoption as an Orphan Care Method in Uganda
International adoption has been gaining popularity since the end of the twentieth century (Selman, 2002). Throughout this increase in international adoptions, the focus has drifted away from itsExpand
Anticipatory child fostering and household economic security in Malawi.
  • L. Bachan
  • Economics, Medicine
  • Demographic research
  • 2014
The results show that households that anticipate fostering responsibilities experience a greater increase in household wealth than both households that do not foster and those that are surprised by fostering, suggesting that additional childcare responsibilities may not be as detrimental to African households as some researchers have feared. Expand
Living, dying, after death: Achieving a “good” death in the time of AIDS orphan care
It is argued here that in Lesotho, the caregiving demanded of grandmothers late into their lives not only alters kin relations for the living but has increasingly made a “good” death unachievable for elderly caregivers. Expand


The Varying Vulnerability of African Orphans
This article is based on a qualitative study carried out in Lira District, northern Uganda, to assess the situation of orphans cared for in extended families. The objective of the article is to bringExpand
Children, AIDS and the politics of orphan care in Ethiopia: the extended family revisited.
There is a rural-urban divide in the capacity to cater for orphans that emanates from structural differences as well as the socio-cultural and economic values associated with children. Expand
The African orphan crisis and international adoption.
Although international adoptions should be used as a last-resort solution, and with tight regulations, the potential benefits to some children merit the opening of a dialogue on the topic. Expand
"When the obvious brother is not there": political and cultural contexts of the orphan challenge in northern Uganda.
It is argued that the consequential transformations in fostering practices in northern Uganda must be historically situated through a focus on the effects of armed conflicts and uprooting of the local pastoral and cotton-based economy, which have occurred since the late 1970s and produced dramatic economic marginalisation with highly disturbing consequences for orphans and their caretakers. Expand
Resource needs to support orphans and vulnerable children in sub-Saharan Africa.
It is estimated that US$1-4 billion will be required annually by 2010, depending on whether support is provided to all orphans living below the poverty line or just those in most need, which is at least four times current funding. Expand
Africa's orphan crisis: two community-based models of care
Two different models of community-based care that have emerged to fill this caregiving gap in sub-Saharan Africa are reported on, and the relative advantages of each are highlighted. Expand
AIDS-Induced Orphanhood as a Systemic Shock: Magnitude, Impact, and Program Interventions in Africa
Abstract According to many descriptive accounts, the orphan crisis in Africa has assumed alarming proportions, largely due to AIDS-related deaths. Using household panel data from Uganda to confirmExpand
AIDS-affected children, family collectives and the social dynamics of care in Ethiopia
Abstract Many programmes for AIDS-affected children pursue resource-intensive and external interventions of care, and often place such children at the receiving end of the care continuum. The aim ofExpand
Gender, Work and Population in Sub-Saharan Africa
This volume...treats in an interdisciplinary manner a number of the gender issues...regarding womens roles in the spheres of production and reproduction....A theme is the need to improve modes ofExpand
Spinning the Epidemic
This article questions why a somewhat singular focus on orphanhood in the context of AIDS persists despite important shifts to more inclusive terminology of ‘orphans and vulnerable children’.Expand