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Orphan Care Program
National Orphan Care Program
The program was started in 1999 to provide food baskets, psychological counseling and to facilitate the wavering of school fees for orphans. At the end of December 2005, there were 52 537 registered orphans in the program and by March 2007 this figures had increased to 53 395 and the children are retained in education1. The Orphan Care Program was evaluated in 2006, and a national situation analysis is currently on-going to provide data for an evidence based national policy on orphans and vulnerable children
Nutrition, Hunger and Food Security

Overall nutrition for the nation also benefits from a school feeding program and a range of welfare/development programs – the Remote Area Development Program (RADP), the Old Age Pension, World War II Veterans grants, Destitution Policy, Orphan Care Program, Home Based Care etc. - with a focus on basic needs for groups vulnerable to poverty and hunger.

The physical availability of food is assured through a national food security policy and strategy that recognize Botswana’s limitations in food production

Obstacles to Achieving UNGASS Treatment Care and Support Targets
  • Material relief has remained the principal focus of the orphan care program, without comparable psycho-social support, child welfare monitoring and HIV education and prevention.
  • Other children made vulnerable by the epidemic are not eligible for Short Term Plan of Action (STPA) registration and benefits.
  • There is no national child welfare policy to guide interventions for all vulnerable children, including HIV+ children.
  • Considerable social and political unease is expressed about the sustainability of a ‘culture of dependency’, and lack of clearly articulated graduation strategies for orphaned children reaching 18 years.
  • Poor socio-economic status to meet other basic needs: The OVCs and/or their guardians often sell or exchange the food rations and other safety nets for cash and other commodities
  • Stigma-some parents or guardians as well as some school-going teenagers resist registration because of the stigma attached to those enrolled in the programs and also threats to their self-esteem.
  • NGOs and CBOs providing care and support services to OVCs are concentrated on the eastern part of the country leaving other areas without adequate services
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