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Informal Kinship Care of Orphans in Rural China

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 December 2010

Xiaoyuan Shang
Affiliation:
Social Policy Research Centre, University of New South Wales, Sydney NSW 2052, Australia E-mail: x.shang@unsw.edu.au
Morris Saldov
Affiliation:
Monmouth University, New Jersey
Karen R. Fisher
Affiliation:
Social Policy Research Centre, University of New South Wales, Australia

Abstract

This study examines kinship care of orphans throughout China. It finds that in addition to children becoming orphaned if both parents die, some children are treated as orphans when their father dies and rural traditional kinship care obligations restrict the viability of widowed mothers continuing to care for their child. When mothers are forced for socioeconomic reasons to leave the paternal extended family, children effectively become orphans, dependent on ageing grandparents. Girls and disabled children are most at risk. Implementing financial and other support to orphans, widowed mothers and kinship carers could improve the sustainability of these family relationships.

Type
Themed Section on Moving towards Human Rights Based Social Policies in China
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2010

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