Challenges faced by the grandparents in caring for AIDS orphans in Koster
Makgato, Mothabela Jackson
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The prevalence of HIV/AIDS is increasing with immense influence and pressure on the grandparents as primary caregivers and the main supporters of orphans in families. The grandparents are faced with biophysical, socio–economic and psychosocially challenges and lack of support from the community of Koster in the North–West Province of South Africa. Caring for AIDS orphans who have lost their parents due to AIDS and of whom some are infected is an enormous challenge. There should be a partnership between the grandparents, the community, public sector and private sector to assist the grandparents who care for AIDS orphans. Therefore, there are recommendations made by the researcher as tools for health–care workers in order to support the grandparents as they care for AIDS orphans. The objectives of this research were to explore and describe challenges faced by the grandparents in caring for AIDS orphans in Koster, and how their needs could be met by making recommendations for effective support of the grandparents. A qualitative, explorative and descriptive design was used which enabled the research to understand the challenges faced by grandparents in caring for AIDS orphans and how their needs could be met. Semi–structured interviews were conducted to obtain the data. The population studied in this research consisted of the grandparents caring for AIDS orphans in Koster in the North–West Province, South Africa. Voluntary purposive sampling was used to select participants with the assistance of mediators who are working for the Non– Government Organizations dealing with HIV and AIDS in Koster. The sample size was determined by data saturation, which was reached after 15 interviews. Data analysis was carried out simultaneously with data collection. In consensus discussions, the researcher and the co–coder reached consensus on the main, sub and further sub–categories. From the research findings, four main categories were identified namely; the challenges faced by the grandparents, perceptions of the grandparents on how their need could be met, the impact of the challenge and coping mechanisms. It could be concluded that the grandparents are faced with diverse challenges in caring for AIDS orphans. In order to address these challenges the community and government must be fully involved. The basic, psychosocial, socio–economic and biophysical needs can be addressed through support system.
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