Monday, August 17, 2009

Orphaned and Abandoned children with HIV/AIDS in Africa

In the middle of the night, in bet. sleep and a yelling couple outside, I saw a program on ABC Family highlighting the youngest victims of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Africa-the tiny orphaned children, some of who are battling the deadly disease as well. I know about the epidemic in Africa but at the same time, I don't really know. My heart dropped to learn that many of these poor children die when abandoned by their families. One baby boy was left out in a field to die the day he was born. He survived overnight and when the unmerciful sun beat down on his tiny body, he suffered burns on his chest and stomach. What a way to enter the world. Other children are left alone, abandoned so to speak when their mother (with AIDS) dies on them. This little boy touched my heart so much that I wanted to reach into the TV and hold him and cuddle him and kiss him. His mom died when he was two months old and after a few days, he was found by his aunt who tried to care for him but saw him as too much of a burden so she thankfully took him to an orphanage that specializes in caring for abandoned children with all sorts of ailments including HIV/AIDS. This little boy was four months old and stricken with AIDS. His whole body was covered in rashes. He was as small as a two month old and so emaciated. Of course his large tummy was full of worms. I watched this child and he looked like he had the weight of the world on his little shoulders. He would not smile, he would not grimmace. He just layed there in the caretakers arms. No sound came from him although the commentator mentioned he was in pain all the time. There are a few orphanages that specialize in taking in these unwanted children and I wish I could remember the name of the program so I could support them somehow. I'll look them up online.

I just had to mention this. Sometimes we drown ourselves with our problems believing we have reached the end of the world when there are others less fortunate out there than we are. I never liked when people would tell me there are others less fortunate than me when I would relay some issues to them but it is important to Stop and Look outside of yourself for a moment. Food for Thought.

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