Update on Power of Love's Project "Health Care for HIV Positive Children in Zambia"
We kicked off the New Year with a special present for one of the children in our pediatric HIV/AIDS care program. Gift, a delicate and sweet six-year old, is HIV positive and has Cerebral Palsy. We were able to provide Gift with a custom-built chair that will allow her to be more mobile. Gift is largely unresponsive and requires continuous care, which Power of Love has been able to provide in the form of nutritional and medical support. Now, with her custom-built chair and standing frame, she will be more comfortable and independent. Gift has been a joy to have in the program, and her mother and POL family care for her deeply. We sincerely hope this addition to their home will allow her to develop and overcome some of the limitations of her condition. All of our work with HIV positive children is possible due to support from donors like you and we would like to thank you for enabling us to help children like Gift and the other 147 children in Power of Love Foundations’ pediatric HIV/AIDS care program in Zambia.
Achievements of Power of Love's Pediatric HIV/AIDS care Program in 2011
1. We introduced a weekly developmental program for children in the community and in our pediatric AIDS care program. In this program called “Say and Play” children engage in organized games. The goal of this program is for children to have fun, for the Project Nurse to assess their mental and physical growth, and to keep the children off the streets especially during weekends. As a part of this program children are provided with help with their homework ((follow ups are being done at school and in the children’s homes) and as a result most children have improved their school performance. Second, a few family members have started accompanying their children and this has strengthened relationships at home. Third, the local community is benefitting from this program as children from the community have started attending the weekly program. We would like to thank the Elizabeth Glaser Foundation for training our staff in “Say and Play” activities and donating equipment such as educational DVD’s, balls, paper, crayons, and chairs for children.
2. We added 15 children to our pediatric HIV/AIDS care program in January 2011. In 2011, all children (except 3) in this program improved in health (in terms of fewer opportunistic infection, weight gain, and improved CD4 counts).
3. In our ante-natal program, out of the 12 babies born to date 11 tested negative for HIV.
4. All school age children in our program are in school as we continue to provide funds for school expenses (tuition, books, shoes and uniforms) to caregivers of children who need this support.
4. We continue to provide food, medicines, and a package of life-saving health care services to 148 HIV positive children in the Matero compound in Lusaka, Zambia. The package of services includes weekly health check-ups from Community Health workers, monthly visits from the Project Nurse, psychosocial counseling, and education in HIV prevention and adherence monitoring and training for older children. In addition, we provide ongoing training to caregivers in HIV/AIDS care.
To sum, to date over 1100 children have benefitted directly or indirectly, from this program over the last 7 years.
Funding Requirements for 2012
At this time, we are raising funds to continue to:
1. Provide food, medicines, and a package life-saving health care services to all children in our program,
2. Train an additional 100 caregivers/grandmothers in HIV/AIDS care,
3. Ensure that all caregivers continue to be tested for cervical cancer and breast cancer screening, 4. Continue the HIV “testing and prevention” program for the caregivers of the children so that our model is comprehensive model (with prevention, treatment, care, and economic empowerment),
5. Continue to provide school expenses for children whose parents need this support, and
6. Continue the “Say and Play” developmental program for children in our pediatric HIV/AIDS care program and in the community.
Please donate generously to this program so that we can improve the health of HIV positive children, the children can be back in school and learning, and live close to normal lives.