Over the last three decades the HIV epidemic has touched the life of every Zambian in some way. Many young parents have died,
leaving their children in the care of grandparents. This research is based on 14 months of qualitative and quantitative data
collection, guided by an ecological perspective on child development, in Misangwa, a small rural community in the Zambian
Copperbelt Province. The focus is on so-called skipped-generation households, which are households where the younger generation
and their older guardian(s), mostly grandparents, live together without any members of the middle generation. As families
tried to cope with the impacts of HIV, including the increasing numbers of orphans and vulnerable children, they were forced
to find new ways of caring, including new types of households. One of the most prevalent solutions currently seen in Zambia
is indeed the skipped-generation household. These households face high levels of poverty, securing livelihoods is difficult,
and depression is common among members of the older generation. The aim of this research is to provide a comprehensive understanding
of the changing dependency between orphans and other vulnerable children and their older caregivers.
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