National response to orphans and other vulnerable children in sub-Saharan Africa: The OVC policy and planning effort index, 2004

R. Monasch, J. Stover, M. Loudon, D. Kabira, Neff Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The orphaned and vulnerable children (OVC) Policy and Planning Effort Index measures the amount of effort put into place by governments, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and other stakeholders in countries in response to the needs of the increasing numbers of orphans and children made vulnerable by HIV/AIDS. The OVC Index was applied to 36 countries in sub-Saharan Africa in 2004. All countries have some organized effort to respond to the needs of OVC. Most countries have established a coordination mechanism and organized a national consultation to discuss the situation of these children. However, the average score for sub-Saharan Africa was just 48% of the maximum effort and only five countries scored 70 or above. There is considerable room for improvement in all sub-regions and countries. The best efforts are in the areas of coordination and consultation of stakeholders, action planning and government commitment. Legislative review and monitoring and evaluation are the weakest areas. The development of a widely adopted policy specific for orphans and other vulnerable children is another challenge for most countries. The challenge is to build and expand on current efforts and the commitment expressed by governments to assure that the needs of the growing number of children orphaned and made vulnerable by the AIDS epidemic are addressed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)40-59
Number of pages20
JournalVulnerable Children and Youth Studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2007
Externally publishedYes



  • Orphans
  • Policies
  • Sub-Saharan Africa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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