Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC)
According to the 2007 AIDS Epidemic Update, about 11.4 million children in sub-Saharan Africa have lost one or both parents due to HIV or AIDS. Evidence shows that orphans living with extended families or in foster care are frequently subject to discrimination and are less likely to receive health, education, and other services. The situation is more desperate for child-headed households or those living on the streets. The vulnerability of these children puts them at higher risk for exploitation and abuse, and therefore exposure to HIV.
Despite advances in HIV treatment and access to antiretroviral drugs, the number of orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) is projected to exceed 25 million by the end of 2010. The CGHD’s applied research on OVC will assist policy makers and program implementers to make evidence-based decisions about how best to direct funding and program activities and maximize positive outcomes for vulnerable children and their caretakers.