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Orphanhood and child vulnerability - Zambia

  • L. Guarcello
  • S. Lyon
  • F.Rosati

A large proportion of Zambia children must grow up in the absence of one or both birth parents. In all, nearly one-fifth (18 percent) of children aged 0-14 years of age are orphans, one of the highest orphan rates in the Sub-Saharan Africa region. There is also a large group of children, accounting for about eight percent of total 5-14 year-olds, who are fostered, i.e., children who are not orphans but nonetheless live in a separate household from their parents. This Country Brief explores the effect of orphanhood and fostering on child vulnerability. Evidence is presented indicating that orphanhood increases child vulnerability on two fronts: it makes it more likely that a child is denied schooling and more likely that a child is exposed work. Becoming a double orphan reduces of probability of attending school only by six percentage points and increases the probability of work only by almost three percentage points. The loss of only one parent has a smaller but still significant effect on school attendance and work.

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Paper provided by Understanding Children's Work (UCW Programme) in its series UCW Working Paper with number 28.

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Date of creation: Sep 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ucw:worpap:28
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