Many are stepping up to prevent the threat of HIV turning into AIDS.
Annemarie Boks, an Africa Inland Mission (AIM) missionary, is one person who is taking part in the fight against AIDS. She’s worked in Congo as a nurse for years. Since 2002, she has been working with the AIDS Awareness program of the CECA 20, or Communauté Evangélique au Centre de l’Afrique, as their manager.
The AIDS Awareness Program brings information about the disease to churches. They train church leaders in several different ways to care for people living with AIDS which opens doors to talking about God.
Leaders are helping by establishing support groups and action groups to provide support through the community and through God. Around 20 groups are already active.
Leaders also visit people with AIDS, encouraging and listening to them. Though it sounds simple, it has meant a lot to the people affected by the disease.
Finally, there is support of people who voluntarily test others. HIV tests are done in hospitals, but they must be confirmed in Uganda. There has been collaboration to get treatment of AIDS to Congo.
Recently, Boks and her team have been spreading a message about their fight against AIDS and the importance of being tested in schools and in a market. They successfully reached over 5,000 people.
Unfortunately, the program didn’t have quite enough sponsors, and the team believed it might be discontinued. But, after communicating the message through advertising, the team met at a hospital with visitors from Kinshasa who were evaluating the treatment program of people living with AIDS in the health zone of Adi.
One of the visitors is connected to an organization which was considering supporting the program. For the health zone of Adi, that would mean no more problems with shortages of ARVs or tests: they wouldn’t have to end the program.
By God’s grace, the Kinshasa team said the health zone would receive support. Click here for more details.
Praise God that the program will continue. Keep praying for those affected by AIDS.