American International Journal of Social Science

ISSN 2325-4149(Print), ISSN 2325-4165(Online) DIO: 10.30845/aijss

Observations Regarding HIV/Aids and the Youth in South Africa
Dr. Janet M. Ferguson

This paper is based on personal observations and experiences while traveling in South Africa, during Spring, 2008. The children in this country are affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic on a number of levels, from losing their parents and being orphaned, to contracting the disease through their birth mother. Sexual abuse, rape, or making uninformed choices and engaging in high risk behaviors that expose youth to the virus results in spreading the disease again and again. Extreme poverty, lack of medical resources and the social stigma attached to HIV/AIDS compounds the problem. While in Cape Town, I volunteered in an orphanage, a prison for young offenders, several high schools and visited families living in the Townships. This is an account of my first hand experiences and observations of the devastating impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in South Africa.

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