Nearly 19 million children live in South Africa. It is important to understand where children live and the circumstances in which they live because this helps to inform the direction of policy responses and interventions. For instance, orphaning has increased over recent years, but this is not the main reason for child-parent separation, or for the existence of child-headed households.
This indicator shows the number and proportion of children in South Africa who are living in the same household/dwelling with both their biological parents, with their mother only; with their father only; or who are not living with either of their biological parents.
An orphan is defined as a child under the age of 18 years whose mother, father, or both biological parents have died (including those whose living status is reported as unknown, but excluding those whose living status is unspecified).
A maternal orphan is defined as a child whose mother has died but whose father is alive, while a paternal orphan is a child whose father has died but whose mother is alive. Paternal orphans are morely like to be living with their remaining parent - their mother.