The purpose of this paper is to explore the socio-economic impacts of AIDS on families caring for AIDS-orphaned children in Mbeya rural district, Tanzania.
A qualitative inquiry employing one-on-one in-depth interviews was conducted in 2015. Purposive sampling technique was used to recruit participants (n=24) comprising 20 heads of families caring for AIDS-orphaned children, two local government staff and two staff from Isangati Agricultural Development Organisation – a non-government organisation. Qualitative data were analysed using thematic and framework approach.
Results demonstrated that families caring for AIDS-orphaned children experienced severe socio-economic impacts of the epidemic. Reduction in household savings, increase in living expenses on health care and increased education fees were the identified economic impacts on these families. Social impacts included labour shortage, withdrawal of children from school and increased demand for food.
There is a need for urgent responses and for scaling up programmes delivered by organisations, institutions and the government of Tanzania to help families cope with these impacts.
This study provides evidence on socio-economic impacts of AIDS on families caring for AIDS-orphaned children in Tanzania. An understanding of these impacts can help governmental and non-governmental institutions and programme planners to address the problem in their policies and develop evidence-based strategies and interventions in responding to the problem in Mbeya and Tanzania. Moreover, responses to reducing the impacts of AIDS on families require a holistic approach that encourages the involvement of all sectors and agents outside of the health sector.
Fauk, N.K., Mwakinyali, S.E., Putra, S. and Mwanri, L. (2017), "The socio-economic impacts of AIDS on families caring for AIDS-orphaned children in Mbeya rural district, Tanzania", International Journal of Human Rights in Healthcare, Vol. 10 No. 2, pp. 132-145. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJHRH-01-2017-0002
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