Publication Date
Publication Date: 

July 2004

Published by UNICEF, this paper is designed for senior leaders and decision-makers around the world who can influence policies, programmes and resources directed to orphans and vulnerable children.

From the Executive Summary
...the framework is based on lessons learned over many years. It considers families and communities as the foundation of an effective, scaled-up response. Children, too, can be powerful agents of change, a role that enhances their confidence and self-esteem as they become partners in the fight against HIV/AIDS. In addition, the framework recommends that interventions that result from it be directed to all vulnerable children and the communities in which they reside, and integrated into other programmes to promote child welfare and reduce poverty. Targeting children living with HIV or AIDS or orphaned as a result of it will only serve to exacerbate the stigma and discrimination against them.

The framework’s key strategies are as follows:
  1. Strengthen the capacity of families to protect and care for orphans and vulnerable children by prolonging the lives of parents and providing economic, psychosocial and other support;
  2. Mobilize and support community-based responses;
  3. Ensure access for orphans and vulnerable children to essential services, including education, health care, birth registration and others;
  4. Ensure that governments protect the most vulnerable children through improved policy and legislation and by channelling resources to families and communities;
  5. Raise awareness at all levels through advocacy and social mobilization to create a supportive environment for children and families affected by HIV/AIDS.
The specific mix of activities to be implemented within countries will depend on local needs, capacities and priorities. However, there is a growing consensus that education is pivotal in improving the lives and future prospects of orphans and those made vulnerable by HIV/AIDS. Access to essential services also includes equitable access for children, parents and carers’ to life prolonging therapy with ARVs [anti-retroviral treatments].

The framework concludes by defining key actions that must be taken urgently, including the prioritization of support for orphans, vulnerable children and their families in the national policies, actions and plans of affected countries. It asks all governments to assess their resource commitments to launch and sustain an adequate response over the decades that the crisis will be with us.

Click below to download this publication - it is available in several languages.

Chinese, English, French, Indonesian, Portugese, Russian, Spanish, Thai

Number of Pages: 



Email from Ken Legins (UNICEF New York) to The Communication Initiative on September 17 2004.