Human immuno-deficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) is a national disaster for the people of Kenya, children and adults alike. Kenya is estimated to have the ninth-highest prevalence of HIV in the world with about 14 percent of the adult population infected. An estimated 1 million orphans in the country represent only a fraction of the population of children affected by AIDS, which includes children withdrawn from school to care for a sick relative, those in families caring for orphans, and those who have had to become breadwinners to replace the income of a sick parent. Kenya is far from alone in needing to strengthen protections of the rights of AIDS-affected children. Governments around the world have neglected the consequences of AIDS on children and have failed to provide the necessary protections of their rights to survival and development. This failure is one of the most pervasive and lasting crises of the HIV/AIDS catastrophe, and it must be addressed with the greatest urgency.
In the Shadow of Death
HIV/AIDS and Children's Rights in Kenya