The Worldwide Crisis of Orphaned and Abandoned Children

“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans” James 1:27 (NIV)

Orphans are the most vulnerable population on the planet. With no one to protect them, orphans are the most likely to suffer from hunger and preventable diseases and to be forced into slavery, prostitution, and war. Largely due to AIDS and war, the plight of the orphan is growing at alarming rates.

In a list of the most populated countries of the world, orphans would rank #9.

A Group of Orphans in Haiti

  1. China – 1,331,580,000
  2. India – 1,165,800,000
  3. United States – 306,806,000
  4. Indonesia – 230,512,000
  5. Brazil – 191,416,000
  6. Pakistan – 166,800,500
  7. Bangladesh – 162,221,000
  8. Nigeria – 154,729,000
  9. ORPHANS – 143,000,000
  10. Russia – 141,835,000

Conditions Around the World

  • It is estimated that 143 million children in the world are orphans.
  • 15 million children have already lost their parents to HIV/AIDS; by 2010, there will be 20 million orphans from HIV/AIDS.
  • Orphans throughout the world face many challenges-malnutrition, starvation, abuse, disease, loss of family property, decreased school attendance, if any, and death.
  • Millions of children are being trafficked, forced into debt bondage or other forms of slavery, and forced into prostitution and/or pornography.

Conditions in Haiti

A Hut in HaitiThough closer to Miami than Nashville is, Haiti is a country where 80% of its approximately 9 million people live on less than $2 a day. It’s the most impoverished nation in the Western Hemisphere.

  • In Haiti alone, there are estimated to be 400,000-800,000 orphans.
  • One in seven children in Haiti dies before their 5th birthday – mostly of preventable diseases.
  • Orphans lack basic medical care, malnutrition, and immunizations against polio, measles and other preventable diseases.
  • Nearly half of the population of Haiti are children under the age of 8.
  • Child-headed households are becoming more common as potential guardians succumb to AIDS or other causes of death.

What is Our Response?