The impact of poverty, food insecurity, and disease on Southern Africa is most evident in its effects on orphans, vulnerable children, and youth. Although policies throughout the region in support of vulnerable young people are strong, SADC has identified a need for a strategic framework to support these policies, setting out actions for change that complement national and community efforts for development. For this reason, SADC initiated its Strategic Framework and Programme of Action for Orphans, Vulnerable Children and Youth in 2008.
Based on a vision of meeting the rights and needs of all children and youth, the Strategic Framework examines the present situation of orphans, vulnerable children, and youth across Southern Africa and its root causes. From this position, it isolates areas of priority for strategic interventions – harmonisation of policies between Member States, strengthening of capacity, promotion of evidence-based policies – and sets out the partnerships, systems of financing, plans for monitoring and evaluation, and institutional frameworks necessary to ensure these interventions are implemented.