The adoption of HIV/AIDS orphans and food security in rural Ingwavuma, South Africa

Liz Schroeder, Tennassie Nichola

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Public health concern in developing countries is increasingly centred on the relationships between health care, HIV and food security. In developing countries (such as those in sub-Saharan Africa) with large rural subsistence populations, public health concern incorporates the effect of HIV on household subsistence and nutrition. A study to determine whether families who adopted orphans in a rural area of South Africa with a low employment rate and a high prevalence of HIV were food-insecure when compared with families who had not adopted orphans was conducted in Ingwavuma, a rural district in Northern KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. The study shows that households that adopt HIV/AIDS orphans tend to have high dependency ratios. The Logistic Regression estimated indicates that the likelihood of food insecurity increases with orphan adoption, numbers of household members and loss of food produced in storage due to pests. The empirical results also indicate that the meagre income received by households do not improve food security, suggesting that foster care grants to the carers of orphans are being spent on non-food needs of the family.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173-187
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Technology Management and Sustainable Development
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Ingwavuma
  • South Africa
  • food security
  • orphan adoption
  • poverty
  • public health


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