Ministry equips students to fight AIDS in Africa

By June 21, 2007

Africa (WCS) — "Hope For Today's Generation" is a resource
for teaching kids how to fight AIDS in their families and
communities. Developed and field-tested by African educators, this
curriculum will make an impact by reaching children as young as five years of age. Worldwide Christian Schools has partnered with teachers and
administrators in Africa to fund "Hope for Today's
Generation" and pay for its distribution to Christian
schools across Africa.     

PLUSNEWS out of Johannesburg, South Africa reports that the UN
Children's Fund (Unicef) has urged the world to prioritize orphans and
vulnerable children (OVC) in the fight against HIV/AIDS. In a new report, "A Call to Action: Children, the Missing Face of AIDS," Unicef called for
renewed energy in alleviating the plight of children and meeting the targets
set in the UN Millenium Development Goals on AIDS, child mortality and maternal
health for 2015.

"We call upon every
part of the global society to join in a campaign to support national efforts to
ensure that this is the last generation of children that must bear the burden
of HIV/AIDS," the report said.

"WCS' partner schools across Africa
are filled with orphans and vulnerable children," said Dale Dieleman, WCS
field director for Africa. "In
collaboration with the Reformed Church of East Africa (RCEA), we are not
letting this United Nations plea go unheard. The church and Christian
schools should be the first to act, leading the global charge against HIV-AIDS
among children."

Five years ago, with the urging of the
Christian Reformed World Relief Committee in Kenya, WCS funded the health and
life-skills curriculum project written by RCEA teachers connected with Reformed
Church of East Africa. Now in its first edition, each book contains more than
60 biblically-based lesson plans for teachers from first through eighth grade.

This year, an RCEA teachers' writing
team is revising that edition with continued funding from WCS and with an
expanded vision.

"We see this program as a global
teaching tool for classrooms everywhere," said Dieleman. "With assistance from
Christian Schools International, a curriculum team from North
America will write a teacher's supplement of creative, interactive
student activities based on the RCEA lesson plans. Then, a team of African educators
residing in the USA
will review the activities and contextualize them for the typical African
classroom."

Together, this international effort
will engage teachers globally, facing lifestyle and health issues head on with
their students, in a setting of biblically-based patterns of Christian living
beginning as early as Grade 1 for children everywhere.

"In many African countries, the law
demands that HIV-infected children be told they have the disease as early as the
time they enter their school years. Why keep them from the hope they have in
Christ? HIV is not a death sentence for children who can access treatments,"
Dieleman explains. "And for children not infected, why shelter those not
infected from the truth and about how to share Christ's compassion with those
infected? This is why the ‘Hope For Today's Generation' curriculum is so aptly
named." If you can help, click
here
.

 

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