American Foundation for Children with AIDS

The mission of the American Foundation for Children with AIDS is to improve the lives of children and youth struggling with the impact of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. We provide cost effective relief, services, medical and social support, education and advocacy to help these victims achieve their full life potential.
Feb 18, 2014

Taletha tells the tale

Taletha and her porridge
Taletha and her porridge

Theletha  is a 69 years old guardian from Sizeze village in Zimbabwe who is looking after her three orphaned grandchildren: Ashillary  is a 13 year old girl, Talent is a 16 year old boy and Amandolive is a 14 year old girl.

Theletha says she and her grandchildren were struggling to survive before the fortified porridge came. Since the rains did not do so well last year and their crops failed, there was nothing to give her grandchildren to eat. She says ‘it was very painful for me to send my grandchildren to school knowing they are going on empty stomachs.  The porridge came just in time. I had given up and was in tears daily. Now my grandchildren have shining cheeks", she adds before bursting into laughter. She points out that she is amazed that someone can think about her from such a distance to send her this porridge. She prays that God bless them.

Granny Teletha’s grandchildren received three goats in 2012. She is celebrating since those goats have multiplied and now she has 6 goats and 3 kids. Teletha says,” I had no hope of buying livestock for my grandchildren. Now they walk with their heads held up high because they can be counted among the people with livestock.  If I die, I know that they will not suffer. They will be able to survive with the milk and meat from the goats."

And now, thanks to the gift of porridge, the animals are not in danger of being butchered before their time, before the flock is big enough to sustain the family.  

We at AFCA are thrilled for Taletha and the children - they are a fine example of how well this livestock project is going.  Thanks for supporting it, friends! 

If you'd ever like to know more about our work or how you can become more involved, please write me at tweaver@AFCAids.org.  I am always happy to answer questions!

Jan 30, 2014

Locadia Can Laugh Again

Locadiah
Locadiah

With the recurrent food shortages threatening many lives in Zimbabwe, AFCA came up with a very crucial support initiative that has seen many families survive what could have claimed the lives of their loved ones. The distribution of fortified porridge has come at the time when most of the orphan families, especially those who are sickly, were on the verge of total breakdown due to the intensity of hunger in their homes. The sickly, children and the elderly have endured the brunt end of the prevailing hunger challenges and it is the sick and the children who have benefited mostly from porridge distributions.

The distributions were mostly targeted to those desperate orphan families that have received livestock from AFCA, thereby drastically reducing the temptation of considering abusing the livestock project as a temporary means of getting out of the desperate situation. This has seen the livestock project grow from strength to strength and in the process also contributing more towards uplifting the lives of these vulnerable orphan families. If the distributions can continue for a little while longer, they are going to help orphan families tend their planted crops until harvest time and this will prevent a situation, where due to hunger pressure, they end up eating immature crops, thereby severely compromising the yields and prolonging the hunger situation. It is very sad that the children could not attend the distribution as they were guarding crops in the fields while others were attending an extended programme of immunization.

One of the beneficiary families is that of Locadia who is a sixty-five year old guardian from Sizeze and who is looking after a three year old boy, Mbekezeli, and Nkosiyapha, a five year old boy.

Locadiah says the porridge is a gift from God that He sent through angels from distant lands. She goes on to say that she is praying that God blesses these angels who have responded swiftly to rescue her family from the jaws of hunger and starvation."I am very happy about this gift. We have gone through a lot this year and hunger was one thing that was worrying me a lot. This porridge has given me hope and I feel there are people out there who care about us," says Locadiah.

The family was given three goats in 2012 and the number has gone up to six.

           “I never thought that my children would ever own livestock

             But now am very glad that they have a small heard of goats. In this society, my

            children are also recognized as livestock owners and this gives

            me a very special feeling.”

To each of you who have helped Locadiah and her kids, THANK YOU!  

If you'd ever like to know more about our work or how you can possibly visit Locadia or others in our program, please drop Tanya a note at tweaver@AFCAids.org.

Jan 23, 2014

Reginah and her kids

Reginah and porridge
Reginah and porridge

Reginah is a sixty one year old guardian from Sizeze village. She is looking after and raising the following orphan family:

  • Mthokozisi, a 15-year old boy, 
  • Siphosenkosi, a 16-year old girl, 
  • Richard, a 9-year old boy, and 
  • Phathiso, a 10-year old girl

The family says they have been struggling to make ends meet and that hunger was the major problem that was threatening the whole family since none of the family members is gainfully employed. This family received three female goats in 2012. The goats have given birth and they now have six goats.  Reginah says they are using manure in their garden plots and milk in tea.  The only problem is that during these past months, rain didn't come in time for the gardens to mature, so the family has been hungry.  

Not wanting to eat the goats before a herd has developed (this is part of our contact with the families we help), AFCA has provided the family with fortified porridge during this season of hunger. 

Reginah says “The porridge is not just ordinary food. It is the medicine that has healed my family. My grand children have been unwell for some time, but since we started eating the porridge, all of them are very active and well.  Thank you to everyone who has given us this gift!”

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