The River Fund

The River Fund is dedicated to providing physical, emotional and spiritual support, to people living with or affected by HIV/AIDS and other life challenging illnesses and circumstances, as well as their loved ones and caregivers. We serve the poor, those who often are alone and in need - regardless of a person's religion, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender or age.
Oct 4, 2010

New Tutor and Fall Update

By browsing web pages of Global Giving, Ms. Avni and Krunal from Mumbai which is 1200kms. away from Nellore (Little HEARTS orphanage), found our work and contacted me to send an 18 years old HIV infected boy whose both parents died of AIDS. Finally, safely he reached to Nellore and he is on ARV Therapy.  In an Auto Rickshaw accident in Mumbai his both legs are not working and he is struggling to walk. He was the best dancer in his area and also got the best Football goal keeper award! He speaks English, Hindi and Marathi.

Recently he started teaching English and Hindi to Little Hearts children  and songs as well. He is very happy now for all the facilities provided at Little Hearts, before reaching Nellore, he was taking shelter in an Auto Rickshaw! Few days ago a local Foundation distributed blankets and pillows to HIV infected children, on that day I have introduced him to the Electronic and Print Media.  He hugged and touched my foot for being one of our family members. We are providing him extra nutrition i.e. egg, milk and fruit every day according to the UN guidelines.

All of our children at little hearts are doing very well in education, mainly girls getting first or second ranks in their classes.  Recently we have taken a decision to give monthly pocket money to the elder boys and girls.  Kiran is regularly attending college and paid Rs.2000/- as part of college fee and Rs.500/- for annual examination fee.  Two tutors are regularly attending for evening tutoring to teach and help with their home work for all subjects.  The Right Now Foundation has sanctioned 2 computers to little hearts. Very soon these computers will be installed at Little Hearts children to become computer literates!

Due to Quarterly Examinations all the children at Little Hearts are very busy with the studies. 

Rural Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Mr. Deva Kumar and Circle Inspector of Police (CI) Mr. Jayarami Reddy visited Little Hearts to spend time with the children and also promised to help these children in near future. 

With the kind support of River Fund we have been feeding all the children with nutritious food like egg, milk, fruits, chicken and fish since 2005! Those who visiting little hearts expressing their satisfaction and sharing happiness with children.

Links:

Jul 22, 2010

Prevention Training in Schools

School Children
School Children

On behalf of the families that benefit from HIV/AIDS programmes which is being conducted by the Training of Trainers a product of The Long-term HIV/AIDS Survival Skills,we would like to extend our gratitude all friends and our donors who are contributing to this Initiative since it began. We have teamed up with Community Based AIDS groups, Counselors whose mandate is to provide Home based care, medication, nutrition, ongoing counseling. The goal of empowering women and training trainers is to equip rural women with skills to enable them stop the spread of HIV/AIDS, help the people living with HIV/AIDS live longer life. The HIV/AIDS trained counselors are carrying out the following. i) Nutrition, care and support. ii) Conducting AIDS education to local communities, churches and schools. iii) On going Counseling conducted weekly. iv) Monthly home visitation v) Medication The Trainers have among the 1,600 women sensitized in the recent past, identified and trained more 4 women to help as trainers as well in Tororo. As a team they reached and sensitized 133 rural women in Busia and 50 women in Bugiri. The PLWAs livelihoods are changing gradually thus gaining hope. The team also visited 5 schools around our operation areas to raise awareness of the HIV/AIDS scourge among children particularly the OVCs. The schools include Segere Primary schools, Guule Primary, Nambogo Primary School, Iyolwa primary School, and Magola primary school Thank you so much for the support and may God Bless you

Jul 3, 2010

HEARTS Orphanage Site Visit

Bill Brower is a Field Program Officer with GlobalGiving who is visiting our partners’ projects throughout South and Southeast Asia. On June 8th & 9th he visited the Little Hearts Orphanage in Nellore, India. His “Postcard” from the visit:

The facilities at HEARTS’ orphanage seemed basic but adequate for the 42 children currently living there. As the kids grow they will need more space and they’re hoping to add a floor to address this. The children, all from the “untouchable” class, looked healthy and appeared happy. I saw the home at about half capacity as many of the children go to stay with other family members in the summer for 5-10 days (Little Hearts provides transportation money and pocket money to do so).

According to the founder CP Kumar, about 80% of the children are “full” orphans having lost both parents, and 60-70% of the children have lost parents due to AIDS. The orphanage usually doesn’t take in children who are HIV-positive because according to CP Kumar they are “too big of a risk”. They have 2 boys and 1 girl who are infected.

While the project description claims Little Hearts is working to fight the stigma against HIV/AIDS, it sounds like this is not actively being done. They have taken women to get tested, but it appeared that the organization does little beyond this and support the children.

This is a highly founder-driven organization and CP Kumar was open with their financial records. Other organizations in the area steal 90% of the money they receive according to CP Kumar and so he was eager to show me they were part of the other 10%. He even showed me bank account details on his mobile phone. Everything appeared to be in order (though I’m far from a certified accountant).

The true test of the success of an orphanage in my opinion is how well the children transition out of that environment as they get to be adults. HEARTS is too young of an organization to tell, but there is little doubt that these children are in a better situation than they would be otherwise.

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