Well, it has become abundantly clear that much education is needed about the status of HIV+. Having lived in Ukraine for nearly ten years, I have realized that HERE we (the world at large) have done such a great job at scaring people about the virus that we have now actually scared people of PEOPLE. Yikes! Finding volunteers to simply feed HIV+ infants can be a problem. At one point I was volunteering regularly at an orphanage and I wanted to take a particular translator with me to talk about things of God. The mother of the translator said no to the request because she had her whole life in front of her and was afraid that she’s contract the virus just being around the children.
I am becoming more and more aware that this stigma is also huge in the U.S. I am familiar with so many websites and with people who are involved in advocating for families for my little friends here that I somehow wasn’t aware that for the general public, an HIV+ status means different things to different people.
My friend Chris at Eli Project has posted about several of my children who desperately need homes. They will soon age out of their orphanages and will be placed in institutions…places that make it VERY difficult to visit the children and nearly impossible to adopt them. I was checking with Chris about whether anyone had contacted him about one child in particular and he said that the GENERAL response to adopting these children is “Are you serious? Are you kidding?”
Let me answer the questions: Yes, we’re serious. No, we’re not kidding. These children need families.
And we need to educate families worldwide!
To that end, I am beginning to gather all of my resources and will soon (hopefully) have another ‘page’ on this blog that will give information about the disease, will link to other websites, and will feature HIV+ children who need homes. I will also link blogs that will connect readers to families who are in process or who have already adopted HIV+ children.
I’ll let you know as soon as the new page(s) are ready, but please, please, please, be praying NOW about how YOU might be able to help these children. Get educated. Offer a special class in your church. Get involved!!