Journal Article

Circumstances and motivations for fostering children in Zambia

This short report explores motivations and circumstances of fostering children at six sites in Zambia. Cross-sectional community household surveys using multistage random sampling (totaling 1,503 households, reporting on 5,009 children) and participatory qualitative research (focus groups and in-depth interviews) with adult and youth community members were conducted as part of baseline research for the US-funded RAPIDS (Reaching HIV/AIDS Affected People with Integrated Development and Support) program. Interviews and discussions with community members revealed the complexity of fostering patterns and decisionmaking, considered from the dual perspectives of fostering household and fostered child. Program implementers need to recognize the complexity of fostering in intervention design, including the possibility of introducing perverse incentives.