|Major Themes||Summary of Findings by Theme|
|Caretaking by default after a maternal death||
- Female relatives from the maternal side were routinely called upon to care for orphaned children, often without having a choice in the matter.|
- Maternal death often exacerbated tensions between caregivers and extended family members who did not offer support for orphaned children.
- Men frequently remarried before the mourning period ended, cutting ties with the maternal family.
|Barriers to accessing high quality care||
- The physical and economic challenges of accessing health centers played a role both in maternal death, and the provision of follow-up care to orphaned children.|
- Staffing shortages diminished the quality of care received by individuals who were able to access health centers.
- Infants faced acute needs following maternal health. While health facilities provide free milk substitute for the first six months of life, these services were inconsistently available and difficult to access.
- Older children faced health and nutritional risks related to protein deficiencies and low caloric intake.
|Financial hardships for caretakers and impacts on children||
- Caretakers faced economic hardship, stretching limited resources to support orphaned children.|
- Integrating orphaned children into a family often acted as a source of tension between spouses.
- Families often turned to short-term, informal labor, to absorb the immediate impacts of caring for orphaned children, which can limit a family's opportunities for financial stability and independence.
- Orphaned children were often called upon to take on additional household responsibilities, with preference showed towards biological children in allocation of expenses related to school and nutrition.
|Loss of childhood for orphans, especially female orphans||
- Orphaned children faced disadvantages related to educational opportunity, when families could not afford school fees and supplies.|
- Girl children were often expected to take on caretaking and household responsibilities, and faced pressures to find a partner at an early age in order to alleviate financial pressures on the family.
- Losing a mother also had informational, emotional, and social costs for girl children.
|Government assistance and other support programs||
- Many participants did not know about support available through government institutions and NGOs.|
- Those who did seek support, often felt it was ineffective, non-transparent or difficult to access.