Monday, December 12, 2011

My Christmas Wish

A little over a week ago I wrote about a girl I met in Uganda named Angel.  Angel is HIV positive and lives in the slums of Kampala.  Today my dear co-workers in Uganda gave me more information about this precious young girl. What I learned broke my heart...

"Angel is a total orphan. Both of her parents died of HIV / AIDS. It’s unfortunate that she is infected too. Mr. Tamale picked Angel from a rubbish pit from where she had been dumped by her relatives and the state at which she was found was quite sad and severe. She was on the verge of dying. Apparently Tamale has no stable source of income and it is for this reason that he seeks a hand especially with school fees."

On the bright side...Angel does believe in Jesus and trusts Him for her salvation.  I am so grateful to Tamale who had compassion for Angel even though he struggles to provide all their needs.  Angel is 9 years old and in the second grade.  She hopes to one day be a doctor.  

Angel is in desperate need of a sponsor.  Would you sponsor her?  What a great Christmas gift to give to Angel...the opportunity to attend the childcare center where she will receive food, love and care from the Christian staff, medical care as needed, and help with her education.  What better gift could you give?  Please contact me if you are interested...let's get this girl a sponsor!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

World AIDS Day 2011

Today is World AIDS Day.  Did you know that 6,800 new HIV infections occur daily, worldwide, and more than 5,700 people die of AIDS each day?( Courtesy of Compassion International:  WOW!  

When I was in Uganda this past summer it was the first time I was really around HIV/AIDS.  I remember seeing these signs in many schools...

This was in an elementary school.  I also remember a sign that read, "HIV/AIDS is not the end of your life".  I can only imagine being a child and finding out you have a deadly virus...where medical attention is not always readily available and expensive.  How can you not feel like it was the end of your life?  A girl named Mary from the AMG orphanage recently graduated with certificate in catering services. She was abandoned by her family because she has HIV and she beat the odds thanks to the encouragement of the AMG Uganda staff and our Savior Jesus Christ. 

Since Uganda, when I hear HIV/AIDS I always think of a young girl I met in the slums of Kampala named Angel.  We were doing home visits near the Masajja Childcare Center and Angel just came up to me and grabbed my hand.  She was sweet, had a beautiful smile, and I remember one of her flip flops was broken.  This was the first time I had walked through one of the slums in Kampala and wasn't easy.  Let me paint a picture for you...we enter an alley and pass small shacks and one roomed apartments very close to each other.  The ground is dirt, uneven, with trash everywhere.  There is no grass, play grounds, or paved streets.  Children wearing rags, some with shoes some without, are running around everywhere.  Naturally, white people walking down their street cause quite a commotion.  Because this was the first time I had seen this type of desperate poverty, I struggled to keep my cool and not break down in tears in front of all these children, who live this life day to day.  Anyway...back to Angel.  So, the team did a few home visits and Angel stuck by my side throughout my time there.  She didn't say much just held my hand and smiled.  As we started our way back Jennifer, one of the workers at Masajja, told me that Angel has HIV.  Angel has HIV...and she lives the slums with a broken flip flop.  All I could think long will she last if she doesn't receive proper nutrition and medical care?  I would guess that Angel is anywhere between 8 and 10.  So young to be facing this deadly disease.  I was so shocked by what Jennifer told me.  I mean I know there are countless children who suffer from HIV/AIDS but I guess I didn't expect to be hit in the face with it by a sweet girl named Angel.  

Angel is in the yellow shirt to my left.
I gave Angel a bracelet and said a prayer for her.  I still think and pray for her often.  I just emailed my friends in Uganda asking about her Angel.  Maybe there is something I can do for her.  It is easy in America to forget that HIV/AIDS is still a huge problem in our world.  Find out what you can do to help and join me in praying for Angel and thousands of children just like her.