Power of Love Foundation

Our Mission is: To turn back the tide of the global AIDS epidemic through innovative community responses that increase the effectiveness of prevention and care efforts. Our Vision is: A world where the AIDS epidemic is in continuous retreat, and people living with HIV/AIDS have access to loving care and treatment in an environment free of stigma and discrimination.
Aug 28, 2016

"Safe Parks": A Community Strengthening Tool

A few children after an educational session
A few children after an educational session

The Power of Love team and Zambian families truly appreciate your continued support for our “Safe Parks” program in Zambia. Your support and caring continues to provides an opportunity for vulnerable children/orphans to play and learn in a happy environment.

Goals: Our goal with the“Safe Park”program, is to provide a safe and happy environment for children to play and learn. Community health workers organize games and educational activities that keep the children engaged, happy, and off the streets for a few hours each week. Homework help is also provided. In addition, while the children are busy, qualified health care professionals observe them for any signs of trauma, grief, and distress and counsel the family as needed. In cases of domestic violence and abuse the child is referred to the appropriate agency for further support. The morning session ends with the provision of a snack for all participants.

Who Benefits? Beneficiaries are children and families living in the community of Matero, one of the largest and poorest compounds in Lusaka, Zambia. Every week 80-85 children and their families benefit from this program that is free and open to all children from the community.

Impact: "Safe Park" games and activities help children cope with difficult situations at home and have a positive impact on their mental health. These activities bring a sense of structure, safety, and normalcy to the child’s environment. In addition, psycho-social support provided in an environment which facilitates discussions leads to an improvement in all aspects of the child's health (physical, mental, social, emotional and intellectual).

One of the unexpected but positive outcomes of this program is that older children who are regular participants become mentors and role models for younger children. Older children, under the guidance of our community health workers, teach, play and provide homework help to younger children. As a result, both sets of children feel a sense of belonging in the community. Also, young adults (18-21 years old) from the community join "Safe Parks" as volunteers to play with their younger counterparts and have a great time. Finally, interaction with other children, both HIV+ and HIV free, reduces stigma associated with HIV.  

To Sum: Almost all children who participate regularly show a significant improvement in their overall health. And with better health they are able to attend school, and show an improvement in school performance. Children are encouraged to bring in their report cards from school and many children feel confident enough to share their progress at school.

“Safe Park” activities have had a greater positive impact on children who have been traumatized and/or abused. In these cases, there has been a reduction in grief and trauma, and the child’s relationship with the family has been positively reinforced. In addition, the children develop a sense of belonging and hope for the future.

Thanks for your caring!

Younger children playing with legos
Younger children playing with legos
Children with new toys
Children with new toys

Links:

Jun 15, 2016

Happy Father's Day! Celebrate fathers everywhere by giving a gift of health to a Child in Zambia

Father’s day is June 19! Let us celebrate fathers everywhere by giving a gift of health to a family in Zambia. Your donation will help prevent malaria, keep vulnerable orphans and children healthy and allow them to attend school.

Location and Need: Power of Love’s malaria prevention program is located in Matero – one of the largest and poorest compounds in Lusaka Zambia. This community is characterized with a high rate of unemplyment and a high incidence of HIV, AIDS and malaria (co-infections rates between malaria and HIV are high). Most residents are poor and live on less than $2 per day – defined as extreme poverty by the UN.  

Malaria Prevention Day 2016: In order to reduce the incidence of malaria in Matero, we will be providing 2000 long lasting insecticide treated nets and education on prevention of malaria to children and families next month. Direct beneficiaries will be 8,000 young children or 4000 adults as a net can sleep four young children or two adults. Over the last six years, our malaria prevention program has benefitted an estimated 35,200 children or 17,600 adults via the provision of 8,800 insecticide treated nets and education on prevention of malaria. 

Next Steps: We are raising funds to provide 5000 nets before the next malaria season in 2017.  The need for nets continues to be huge as most families cannot afford to purchase a net. Also, the recent rise in prices of essential items due to a fall in the value of the Zambian Kwacha in 2015, is causing increased hardship for residents in our community. The current inflation rate in Zambia is 21% and families need more support to survive these difficult times.  

Thank you for helping us eradicate malaria in Zambia. 

Links:

Jun 15, 2016

Happy Father's Day! Meet Two First time Women Entrepreneurs Who Inspire Us Every Day

Father’s day is June 19! This Father’s day celebrate fathers’ everywhere by giving a gift of empowerment to first time women entrepreneurs who are struggling to take care of their families and pay for school expenses for their children. Your donation will help provide business training and micro loans to start a business to women impacted by HIV, and AIDS in Zambia.

Today we would like you to meet two ladies who started new businesses just a couple of months back. They are putting the business principles they learned recently into practice every day, and working hard to increase earnings so they can take better care of their families. At this time, we have 322 women like Gina and Mary (see their stories below) who are taking charge of their lives by selling groceries, used shoes, used clothes, cell phone covers, chair covers, etc. Most women in our micro loans program are trying to overcome adverse circumstances so their children and grandchildren can stay healthy and attend school. These ladies inspire us every day.        

Gina is a 63-year old widow. She had seven children but only four are living as she lost three children a few years back. Her household consists of nine members and she is the sole provider for six grandchildren (out of which three are orphans), two dependents and herself. One of her grandsons who is now six years old, has been sick since birth and is malnourished and underweight. The child’s father does not want to take care of his son and is ready to divorce his wife because of his son’s chronic ill-health.

Life has not been easy for Gina. She had no experience in running a business prior to enrolling in Power of Love’s micro loans program. After completing business training, she started selling charcoal. She buys big bags of charcoal (50 lbs). repackages the charcoal in 2-4 lb. bags and sells the smaller bags at a better price. She is gaining confidence in her ability to run a business and is more optimistic about her future. At this time Gina is in her first loan cycle and on track with repayments.

Mary is a 65-year old widow. She lost seven of her nine children and the remaining two are not in good health. She has 12 grandchildren, but only two are in school. Her oldest grandchild who is 20 years old, dropped out of school in grade nine. Her family cannot afford more than one meal per day.

Mary has several friends in Power of Love’s micro loans program and based on their testimonies she believed that she too can change her life for the better. After completing business training, she started selling charcoal. At this time, she is on track with repayments and happy as she is able to afford three meals for her family.

To Sum: Earnings from businesses enable several hundred women like Gina and Mary, to take better care of their families, keep children healthy, and pay for school and other household expenses. In addition, new women entrepreneurs have become role models, teachers, and mentors as they share their experiences and knowledge with others in the community.

Thanks for empowering women in Zambia.  

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