Food and Self-Reliance for AIDS Orphans

by American Foundation for Children with AIDS
Thembeni and Children
Thembeni and Children

Thembeni is a forty-five year old sickly widow who is looking after three children.  They live in the Mahwanke Village in the Gwanda District.  Their lives have been changed because of your generosity. 

Thembeni tells us ... "I am thankful to the people who donated porridge because my family has been struggling to get nutritional rich food.  The porridge is going to be of great help for the children who are going to school.  They can go after having a very strong breakfast of corn soya blend."

The family was also part of the families who received rabbits in 2012 and she is very happy with the performance of the rabbit project at her home.  Thembeni continues her story ... “The rabbit project at our home, where we were given two female rabbits has been a vehicle for a breakthrough iIn our lives. The number of the rabbits this year has gone up to eighteen.  We have given back two rabbits and have sold seven and I managed to buy uniforms for my children and pay school fees. We have slaughtered three as relish and the meat is tasty and tender."  The family presently has three rabbits and two of them are pregnant!

We share these first hand stories so you know exactly what the American Foundation for Children with AIDS is able to do with the funds you have donated.  Lives are being changed every day!

Are you up for a challenge?  From April 27 through May 1, thousands of people across the world are coming together to unite against extreme poverty.  Will YOU be one of them?  Go to to learn more and to sign up.

From April 27 - May 1, thousands of people across the world are coming together to unite against extreme poverty.
Will you be one of them?  - See more at:

Please contact Tanya Weaver at if you would like to learn more about our program or find out how you can make a difference TODAY.

Dear friends,

What an amazing year it has been for AFCA's children, thanks to YOU!  Because of YOU, thousands of children are thriving and hopeful.  Because of YOU, countless children are healthy and they have returned to school.  Because of YOU, hundreds of children had good food to eat this year.  Because of YOU, hundreds of children have livestock and seeds with which to start small businesses. And because of you, children like Maria not only eat well, but also go to school, dreaming of a future free of poverty. We don't have enough words to thank you for what you've done because it is is life changing.

Thank you for caring for the little ones we serve and for giving them a brighter future.  You are the ones who allow us to keep working for them, providing them with medicine, medical supplies, clean water, food, school fees and supplies, livestock, seeds, self-reliance and HOPE.

As you make your end of the year giving decisions, please keep us in mind so we can continue helping children in 2015 and beyond.

We wish you the best year ever, full of every blessing and happiness imaginable, knowing you are a hope-giver.  If you'd like to learn even more about what we do or how you can meet some of the children you have helped, please contact me at  I'd love to chat with you!

On behalf of the children,




Primrose is an 11 year old girl.

Anabel is a 10 year old girl.

Limpert is a 6 year old girl.

Eric is a 1 year old boy.

What do they have in common? All four children are HIV positive. And all four children are orphans sharing a home with 55 year old Othiliah. There is more, they are a family blessed beyond words by your generosity!
Othiliah tells us about the porridge they received ...

"The corn soya blend is a great blessing for my family. We were feeling the pressure of our hunger, and considered eating field produce which has not matured. With this porridge, the children will be able to go to school full and very strong. The harvest in the fields will not be compromised as we wait until the crops mature."

Can you imagine facing such a decision? The hunger of your family must weigh heavily on your heart. Othiliah was considering compromising their crops when hope arrived in the form of porridge. Thank you for being a part of the hope that saved this family's crop and staved their hunger. Your generosity is felt each day that Primrose, Anabel and Limpert are able to attend school with full bellies.

Would you like to learn more about our projects and the work we are doing every day? Please write us at And, check us out on Facebook and Twitter and see what else AFCA is up to (@AFCAids).

105 goats bleat and make noise in a pasture outside a school in Matopos, Zimbabwe.  We arrive to see them chasing each other, nervous as we enter the pasture and set up in our different places.  Ed and Jodi get ready to vaccinate, handlers are ready to catch goats, and Dave and I get ready to tag goat’s ears with the names of their future owners who are standing by, waiting to see which goats will go home with them.

Outside the fence surrounding the pasture, families wait and some donkey-pulled cards are ready to be loaded with goats because the walk home is long and the carts will make the move easier and faster.

Soon, we develop a rhythm – goats are caught and brought in for vaccination and tagging.  I leave Dave to the tagging and start talking to families, hearing over and over again how this project is going to help the children stay in school while helping guardians feed the children for whom they care.  Everyone is a winner here and it is thrilling to be a part of this day.  It only takes two hours to complete our work here and we move away knowing that something good has happened.  Children and adults have hope that they will be self-sufficient, able to care for themselves without need of further external help.

Before leaving,”Siyabonga”, a song about thanks, is sung to our small group by the elderly guardians and children. It makes me smile each time I hear it because I know that with the thanks, we also receive wishes of blessing and joy.  Feet stomp and hands clap as they sway and sing and my heart stomps and claps to the rhythms, too.

Thank YOU for being the one to whom we should all sing Siyabonga.  Thanks for caring.

Due to an incredibly weak internet connection here in Zimbabwe right now, I can't upload photos, but will do so as soon as i can.

grace and the chickens
grace and the chickens

Grace is a seventy four year old guardian looking after two orphans - Minenhle, a seven year old girl and Mthokozisi, a nine year old boy. They live in a village called Maphane in the area of Wenlock, Zimbabwe.   This is a dusty place, a place that hasn't seen much rain in a long time.  It is a hard place to live, but these three call it home.

In 2012, this small family was given four hens and one cockerel. Grace, not too long ago, said, “The chicken project has brought some healing to us. We were hurting after the loss of my son and the challenges that came with not having someone who is gainfully employed to support us. My grandchildren enjoy feeding the chickens and I have seen their excitement grow as the flock continues to grow.

We have given back the four chickens and one rooster so that another family can start their own project. What a feeling to be able to help others!!

We have slaughtered eight chickens so far and my grand children enjoy the meat. We are using the manure in our fields, too.  My grandchildren say the eggs are tasty and they enjoy them most when we mix them with vegetables from our garden.  Our flock has been growing well and at one point we had twenty-one mature chickens. We even sold some eggs to our neighbors because we had plenty.”

Grace's story fills me with wonder - how a small gift can change lives so powerfully.  4 hens and a rooster are responsible for food, manure, funds, excitement in the children, and dignity in having the ability to help others.  Wow.  

YOU are part of this beauty. You may not know Grace and the children, but rest knowing that your gift has changed their lives and the life of the family they helped.  


If you'd like to find out more about our work, please feel free to email me at  I am happy to share!


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Organization Information

American Foundation for Children with AIDS

Location: Harrisburg, PA - USA
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
tanya weaver
Harrisburg, PA United States

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