As we continue in our August Take the Pledge series, we want to explore another challenge the Association des Femmes Pour la Promotion et le Developpement Endogene (AFDPE) works to address: HIV/AIDS. As mentioned last week in the first post of this series, all pledges made this month will go directly to AFDPE, our nonprofit beneficiary for the month of August.
The Reality of HIV/AIDS in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
To paint an overall picture of the current state of HIV in the DRC, we looked to UNAIDS. As you can see, trends are showing decreases both in people living with HIV and also new HIV infections. This is a positive thing, right?
Since 2004, PEPFAR has invested $459,507,000 into controlling and managing the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Although numbers are looking better, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t hundreds of thousands of lives in the DRC affected by this reality everyday. An estimated 390,000 people are living with HIV in the DRC in 2018.
The topic of HIV is still seen as taboo in the DRC which often prevents people from knowing their status, staying safe and healthy, and accessing healthcare—which is already difficult to access. The stigma causes people to live in discomfort socially and physically, and can lead to more deaths due to HIV/AIDS because people are afraid to face the stigma of receiving treatment or getting tested.
Who are the Children Affected by HIV/AIDS in the DRC?
M is six years old. She is one of seven children in her family. They had to flee from their home and find refuge in Uvira. Before finding refuge, M’s father died of HIV/AIDS. Her mother is still alive, but is also suffering from HIV/AIDS, and therefore is always sick due to lack of access to healthcare. Because M’s mother is not able to provide for her family, she and her siblings eat maybe once a day, if they are lucky.
Due to their lack of financial means, M and her siblings are not able to attend school. M needs assistance to be able to access food, medical care, and education.
How can you Help Address the HIV/AIDS Epidemic in the DRC?
By Taking the GoAbroad Foundation Pledge during the month of August, you can directly help M and her family. For just $168, we can help ensure M has access to food, medical care, and education one full year. That’s $14 a month to help M face of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the DRC.
If you are interested in sponsoring M directly, email [email protected] and mention M for more information.