Simon went today with some of the elder children to the village, to visit their homes. It is important that the children keep that contact with their families and it is always an encouragement for the families to see the children doing so well. While they were visiting a family of one of our children, he was called to come to the home of the neighbours, where a drama was going on. The mother was very sick, she is HIV+, tested, but she denied completely the result of the test. She refused the ARV's, and got sicker and sicker. The father already died earlier, also without the ARV medicines, which slows down the growth of the HIV virus and helps the immunity of the body to get stronger.
The mother was laying on a sack, under the tree, because of the visitors, she was carried to sit (!) against the home. She was mostly unconscious and there was no reaction from her. The family tried to give her some glucose water, she is not eating any more, she is in her last stage of AIDS. There are 8 children and they asked help for the youngest child, a little boy of 1 year and 5 months.He looked okay, not malnourished or with skin rashes.
You see him here on the picture with his 14 year old sister. This girl is looking after him and she looks after the mother as well. There are two older brothers, but the work is mostly done by the girls. The boy had no medical records, not even an immunization card, but they said there was a blood test done, but there was no result. We decided that we would take the boy to Amecet, to get him tested and maybe put on medicines and it would really help the sister, to have than only the mother to care for. When they tried to talk to the mother about bringing the baby to Amecet, there was no response. The grandfather was then brought in to sign our papers and also the local counsellor was asked to come and sign the papers.
It makes me so sad, that in a country like Uganda, where there is so much openness and teaching about HIV and AIDS, people just denied their status, there are free medicines for everyone and still people die like this mother, somewhere deep in the village. Nelson is the name of the baby, he was brought to Amecet, he looked around with big eyes, but he likes the food and the milk. When it was almost evening he developed a high fever, we bathed him and gave him medicines. Tomorrow we have to go for tests. But we welcome him into Amecet. We pray for the family in the village, where the mother is dying, that God helps the family to cope with the situation.