Washington Post Profiles ‘Lost Generation’ of Kenyan AIDS Orphans
The Washington Post today profiles Kenya's "lost generation" of AIDS orphans, many of whom are going hungry and watching their families "break apart" because of a lack of food. Currently, there are 3.5 million children in sub-Saharan Africa who have lost both of their parents, and another 13 million children have lost at least one parent, according to UNAIDS estimates. Aloys Nyabola Mbori, head of a committee tasked with identifying ways to feed and care for the increasing number of orphans in East Kagan, a western Kenyan village, said, "Economies are collapsing and famines are growing in areas that always had food. Africa has seen poverty, but this will be worse than anything we have ever known." Some health and education workers in the country are also concerned that this generation of orphans could contribute to political instability "on a continent already struggling to overcome terrorism and civil and ethnic strife," according to the Post. UNICEF Executive Director Carol Bellamy said, "The implications of this are monstrous." She added that losing one or both parents could have "devastating long-term implications, not only for a child's well-being and development, but for the stability of communities and, ultimately, nations themselves." Bellamy also said that the resulting "chaos" could make more women and children "vulnerable to sexual abuse and exploitation, which facilitates the spread of HIV" (Wax, Washington Post, 8/13).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.