Living Arrangements of Orphans in Sahelian Countries

Richard Marcoux, Université Laval
Amadou Noumbissi, University of Pennsylvania
Tukufu Zuberi, University of Pennsylvania

Important investments in Sahel have reduced slightly the levels child mortality but life expectancy still very low. The number of children without surviving biological parents is increasing and orphans are becoming an important social problem. Because Sahelian societies are mostly patriarchal, becoming fatherless or motherless will have different effects on the well-being of the child.This paper first examines the levels, trends, spatial and socioeconomic variations of the survival status of the parents, living arrangements of orphans and the type of household were children are more likely to reside. We describe characteristics of these children with a special focus on education and economic activities. The paper uses the recent censuses from Chad, Mali, Niger and Senegal made available by the ACAP. These countries collected information on survival status of each biological parent to estimate adult mortality but the potential of this information for the research on child well-being is rarely exploited.

Presented in Session 125: Inequality and Education in Developing Countries