Dani Choi, from S. Korea, who is working with Orphans and Vulnerable Children and Drug Users in Mamelodi, South Africa recently went through the Channels of Hope Facilitator’s Training (for those working in the field of HIV and AIDS).
After the course she wrote, “I can't stop tearing up at the moment as I'm reading through all the questions that I got from the schools at which I teach life orientation including HIV and AIDS information.
“Here are some of their questions:
Do you feel it when HIV enters into your body or when the virus fights you? Can you hear it?
How can you fight HIV?
If someone is HIV positive and I want to help him, but I'm afraid... What should I do?
Why can HIV not be cured?
“If I hadn't taken the training, I wouldn't feel anything about those questions, rather just ignore some stupid ones!
“It gives me hope that I feel something in my heart, seeing the needy concerning HIV and AIDS...
So, the training has already made difference in my mind.”
27 people from 7 different organisations and 18 countries took the “Channels of Hope” Facilitator’s training conducted by AIDSLink International.
They, like Dani, are now being Channels of Hope in Africa and to the ends of the earth!
By Debbie Meroff
Ever wonder what's it like to:
- Make friends with men and women who have been abandoned because they have AIDS, and help them live--or die--with dignity?
- Create alternative jobs for infected transgender people who have begun a new life in Christ?
- Show orphaned kids how to dream again?
- Run a shelter for HIV-infected drug addicts who are shunned by society?
- Live every day with the virus--yourself?
The 17 different individuals from AIDSLink who met in the UK this 6-11 June could tell you.
These very special men and women arrived from five continents with mixed goals for AIDSLink International's 2013 symposium. But all were eager to discuss thoughts, exchange ideas, and strengthen each other in the tough roles God has assigned them.
A plethora of thoughts emerged from guest speakers Peter Fabian, UK Director of AIDS Care, Education and Training (ACET) and Marcy Madzikanda, from the Terrence Higgins Trust, the UK's biggest NGO targeting HIV.
11:58, 11:59, 12:00. Narendra* paced slowly back and forth on the rooftop of the Hospital. Any minute he expected to see a doctor climbing the steps with a report that would tell him whether his wife, Kabita*, was also HIV positive.
Narendra first discovered that he was HIV positive six years ago while he was in the army. Shocked and ashamed, he chose to hide his status from his family and disclosed the truth only to his commanding officer.
He was able to keep his secret for years until his failing health forced him to start antiretroviral therapy (ART).
12:13, 12:14, 12:15. His friend thought that sitting in the warm January sunshine would ease Narendra’s growing anxiety, but Narendra couldn’t stop checking his watch and thinking about Kabita. He was no stranger to worry.
When he first came to the AIDSLink Nepal care center last November he was overwhelmed with the burden of maintaining the secrets he had kept for years now - that he had to take medicine twice a day, every day, for the rest of his life.
Despite years of skilled work as a mechanic, Yuraj* was jobless after a massive companywide downsizing. Weighing his options, he decided to apply for a work visa overseas.
His plans were derailed when the routine medical exam revealed that he was HIV positive. Ashamed, he did not tell his family and went to a different city to work as a driver. After a few months Yuraj became ill. His relatives took him to the hospital and doctors told Yuraj that they were going to test him for HIV. He didn’t tell them that he already knew what the result would be.
When his relatives found out that Yuraj was HIV positive, they left him in the hospital and returned home. After he was discharged he spent six months trying to drink his worries away. However abusing alcohol and ignoring his doctor’s advice only brought him back to the hospital.