Ethiopia: HIV+ Children Receive Top-Tier Education
This project finances a nationally recognized school which uniquely combines HIV+ children with non-affected children. As the children have combined classes, enjoy time together on the playgrounds, and work collaboratively on school projects, friendship overcomes the social stigma of HIV infection.
In Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the Sisters of Mercy (Mother Teresa’s congregation) have a residential program for HIV+ children. While the Sisters could manage the children’s residential needs on a day-to-day basis, they didn’t know how to formally educate the children. And so, they asked the De La Salle Brothers to assist.
Instead of opening a school for HIV+ children only, the Brothers erected a fabulous well-equipped school which attracts students from all over Addis Ababa, and across all socio-economic lines. The Brothers believed that, in addition to providing students with a quality education, they could help overcome the social stigma associated with HIV infection by having children from all walks of life work, study and play together. And that is exactly what is happening! The HIV affected children are being received into the classes warmly by the other children and everyone is receiving a quality education together. This is an example of how one school can change society’s stigmas by bringing people together in an educational setting which is caring and supportive of all students.
Because the majority of the HIV+ children have been abandoned or orphaned by their families, they have no source of income. As such, contributions to this program will provide scholarship funding for HIV+ and HIV-affected children to attend the school. Your assistance in helping to sponsor these children is very much appreciated.
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