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Children and AIDS


Across both decades – Protection and care for children affected by AIDS

© UNICEF/NYHQ2008-1798/Pirozzi
A boy orphaned by AIDS peers out the broken window of his home in Harare, Zimbabwe. He lives with his sister and receives assistance from a UNICEF-supported programme that helps child-headed households.

Since the dramatic increase in provision of antiretroviral treatment in the mid-2000s, AIDS-related mortality has been declining rapidly. 

In 2011, 800,000 lives were claimed by AIDS in ESA, fewer than the 1.3 million lost in 2005. 

AIDS-related mortality declined by more than 50 per cent between 2005 and 2011 in several countries including Botswana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Namibia, Rwanda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

An estimated at 10.5 million child in 2011 had lost one or both parents to AIDS, and needed care and support. 

Where data is available, the percentage of children receiving external support remains low: only in Swaziland (41 per cent) and Botswana (31 per cent) significant numbers of vulnerable and orphaned children are being reached. In most other countries in the region, around 20 per cent or less (7 per cent in Tanzania) of these children receive some sort of external support.



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