In Uganda, nearly 2 million children have lost one or both parents to AIDS. Millions more live with ill relatives or elderly grandparents who are often too frail to adequately care for them. Increasing numbers of adolescents are now heads of households—raising themselves and their siblings without the daily care of a trusted adult.
Many children are themselves HIV positive. Their caregivers, often elderly and poor, are also in need of support, as the wellbeing of children in their care is inextricably linked to their own wellbeing.
These children can be highly stigmatized in their communities and are vulnerable to exploitation and abuse. They are also more likely to be out of school, unemployed, and struggling with psychosocial challenges associated with the experience of devastating loss or chronic illness of parents and other family members.
Communities and families shoulder 90% of the burden of caring for children affected by HIV and AIDS.
Understanding that children need a range of support to help them grow into healthy adults, KIDA offers support in terms of school scholastic materials, basic needs in addition to identifying dedicated leaders and innovative community efforts to help them strengthen services and systems that care for children.