Social Networks, Migration, and Care in Tanzania

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Marijn Meijering

Authors: R. Evans

Publication Year: 2005


Journal: Children and Poverty

Volume: 11

Issue: 2

Categories: Resilience


This paper explores the impacts of the HIV/AIDS epidemic on children and families in northern Tanzania using the concept of social resilience.1 1. This paper is based on a presentation entitled, “Social Networks, Migration and Care in Tanzania: Supporting Women, Children and Young People's Resilience,” prepared for the 2nd African Conference on the Social Aspects of HIV/AIDS Research, International Convention Centre, Cape Town, May 9–12, 2004, organized by the Human Sciences Research Council, South Africa (see: View all notes The study is based on the findings of child-focused research with street children and children and families from HIV/AIDS-affected households. The paper illustrates the coping strategies that children and young people, and parents and caregivers adopt at the household level. In particular, it examines how the burden of care affects different generations of women and highlights their resilience, together with the importance of social networks and the fluidity of movement between rural and urban areas. The research suggests that migrating to urban areas to seek a living in the informal sector represents a survival strategy adopted by some children and young people orphaned by AIDS when their families and communities are unable or unwilling to support them. The paper concludes by exploring parents’, caregivers’, children's, and young people's views on the forms of social support that would promote their resilience and thereby help to mitigate the impacts of the epidemic at the household level.


Marijn Meijering