HIV/AIDS Is A Major Causative Factor in The Ever-Increasing Number of Orphans in Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso had approximately 3,400 new HIV infections in 2016. Apart from that, there were also 3,100 AIDS-related deaths all over the country. Currently, it is estimated that there are well over one hundred thousand people living with HIV in Burkina Faso today. Treatment centers are few and far. And the problem is compounded further by pregnant mothers giving birth to children who are born with HIV. Many parents afflicted with this terrible virus die early, and their children become HIV/AIDs orphans. Burkina Faso is not the only country that has been struck by the AIDS plague. Neighboring sub-Saharan states, such as Cameroon, also have to deal with the same issue.

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 Who Are These Vulnerable Children?

  • A child is vulnerable if he/she is below 18 years of age, suffers from HIV/AIDS and also meets either one or more of the following important criteria:
  • He/she has lost either one or both parents and/or other caregivers
  • He/she has a seriously ill parent/caregiver
  • He/she lives in a family unit where in the past one year, at least one care giving adult has died or has been chronically ill for a long period of time.
  • He/she lives outside any sort of family care (that is, lives on the streets or any sort of institution)

They are forced to face multiple problems, such as the following:

  • Lack of adequate adult supervision and support
  • Loss of identity
  • A steep increase in the poverty level due to the death of their parents or other family members
  • An increased risk of labor
  • High risk of sexual exploitation
  • Significantly fewer opportunities for better education
  • Loss of access to health care because of poor nutrition, hygiene, homelessness and vagrancy.

All of these conditions have created a large number of HIV/AIDS orphans throughout Sub-Saharan Africa. Unfortunately, these orphans have it much worse than other homeless children, who suffer from a similar plight. This is because they are considered diseased and many private orphanages do not want anything to do with them. Apart from that, they are also disavowed by their family members and are left to fend for themselves as best as they can, either in the outback or on the streets. Moreover, their problems are further compounded by the fact that many such innocent children suffer from this dread malady, either through mother to child transmission or through sexual assault. They have almost no access to the healthcare services that they need far more than other people.


These unfortunate children need our help, perhaps more than anyone else in this world. This is where Orphan Life Foundation comes into the picture. We provide help and succor to these orphans as best as we can. But we can only do so with ‘your’ help. Join us to make this world a better place.