Factors influencing the re-integration of orphans and abandoned/vulnerable children into Ugandan communities after leaving orphanages/children homes
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Orphans and vulnerable children are a significant challenge worldwide due to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. HIV/AIDS has caused loss of parents and relatives leading to a rapidly growing number of orphans and vulnerable children. These children lack family care so they end up in children's homes where they grow up. They later have to reintegrate back into communities in order to take their place in society. A study to identify factors that influence the re-integration of orphans into Ugandan society was carried out. The objective of this study was to identify the social, cultural situational factors that affect the re-integration of orphans back into the communities. The study was a descriptive, study. A sample size of 20 orphans and eight caretakers was used. The respondents were from children's homes in Wakiso District. These were young adults of 15 years and above who grew up in children's homes. Also caretakers for these children were also interviewed. Data was collected using a questionnaire and interview guide. Results of the study did not agree with some of the assumptions of the researcher, which included: Lack of proper education and life skills may affect the re-integration of orphans into the community; young adults leave the children's homes when they reach a certain age; due to a well facilitated life in the children's homes young adults may find it difficult to face the real world after leaving the children's home to the community. From the study results children in the homes where the study was done, are taught life skills and are educated. Some children were not willing to leave the homes because of the good life there. From the homes where the study was done, the children leave the homes when they are able to care for themselves. The study was limited by time, refusal of the selected homes to participate in the study and limited literature about the study topic.