In rural South Africa, high HIV prevalence has the potential to affect the care and support that kin are able to provide to those living with HIV. Despite this, families seem to be largely resilient and a key source of care and support to family affected by HIV. In this article, we explore the motivations for the provision of care and support by kin. We use the results of a small-scale in-depth qualitative study conducted in 10 households over 6 months in rural KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, to show that family obligation and conditional reciprocity operate in varying degrees and build social capital. We highlight the complexity of kin relations where obligation is not guaranteed or is limited, requiring the consideration of policy measures that provide means of social support that are not reliant on the family.
Obligation to family during times of transition: care, support and the response to HIV and AIDS in rural South Africa.