Health: HIV/AIDS

House of Lords written question – answered on 7th October 2008.

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Photo of Baroness Miller of Chilthorne Domer Baroness Miller of Chilthorne Domer Spokesperson in the Lords, Home Affairs

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Why the categories of "orphans and vulnerable children" and "children affected by AIDS" in the updated HIV/AIDS strategy do not refer to street children's lives; and how that strategy will ensure that the needs of street children form a part of national plans of action.

Photo of Baroness Crawley Baroness Crawley Labour

"Orphans and vulnerable children" (OVC), and "children affected by AIDS" (CABA) are accepted and internationally recognised terms that encompass all aspects of vulnerability to and from AIDS, and includes street children.

Many national plans of action are already prioritising street children. For example, in Zimbabwe, DfID's programme of support is going to reach organisations such as Streets Ahead who are providing health, educational and psychosocial support for vulnerable children and children living on the street.

The UK Government are the second largest donor to UNICEF and provided £105 million to support the work of the organisation in 2006. This encompasses action in 13 African countries where UNICEF is actively supporting national plans for orphans and vulnerable children. These plans will ensure vulnerable children, including street children, access basic services and are protected from abuse. UNICEF also supports direct help for street children affected by AIDS. For example in Haiti, UNICEF advocates for and supports a package of services to 1,500 street children in Port-au-Prince including medical care, counselling, prevention, treatment and vocational training services.

A copy of the updated strategy Achieving Universal Access—the UK's strategy for halting and reversing the spread of HIV in the developing world and the supporting evidence paper have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses. These are also available on the DfID website at www.dfid.gov.uk.

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