Orphan Crisis

 

It is estimated that there are 150 million documented orphans worldwide. There are so many statistics on the internet regarding the orphan crisis and sometimes those statistics are interpreted wrong or incorrect in the first place. While the universal number is 140 million (take a look for yourself, the first number to pop up on google is 140 million) there are orphans that aren’t being accounted for. This number includes the children who have not only lost both parents, but also the children who have lost just one parent. The leading cause of death is HIV/AIDS, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa, where the orphan crisis is the worst.

Why is a child with just one parent considered an orphan you may ask? When a child loses a single parent to HIV/AIDS, the surviving parent is likely carrying the disease as well. HIV/AIDS is a brutal disease that takes a toll on the human body, making everyday tasks difficult or even impossible. The child left behind often becomes neglected or the care provided by the parent is impaired. In developing countries, the child is automatically at a disadvantage after losing a parent, making he or she struggle to get healthcare, education, food, etc. HIV/AIDS took the life of a parent for three out of four orphans in Sub-Saharan African developing countries. Orphans who are victims of losing a parent to HIV/AIDS often work as child laborers.

It is predicted that there are millions of orphans that are not included in these statistics. Due to demographics, lack of technology in other countries, we truly do not know how many orphans are in the world. Most of the children accounted for are the one living in homes, foster homes, orphanages, etc. The ones who are not accounted for are the orphans sold into sex slavery, working as child laborers, living on the streets, or even recruited into armed forces. Tens of thousands of children are estimated to be recruited to fight in armed forces, 1.2 million children are estimated to be trafficked each year. Take a look at some mind blowing statistics below: