Kimberly Vrudny

Participant 04

In 30/30 Participants, J. L. Zwane Centre, South Africa on August 12, 2010 at 7:30 am

“Participant 04” is a widow living in Guguletu who has opened her home to twelve orphaned and abandoned children. She wishes she could do more.

I live in one of the low socio-economic group areas where the large part of it is still informal settlements; where people live in shacks. This creates overcrowding and hygiene is not that much observed. In this area HIV and AIDS are rife. The government and some of the non-governmental structures are trying to educate people about prevention of HIV and AIDS treatment available for it—but it is still a problem because people are unwilling to disclose their status due to the stigma associated with HIV and AIDS. Some people would rather go to sangomas (witchdoctors) for treatment and end up dying. Parents die leaving behind orphans some of [whom] are also infected. Some of these children are abandoned with none to take care of them, or would be left with an elderly lady who also needs to be taken care of. This is very pathetic. This is what touched my heart and I opened my home to such children. I am presently staying with children whom I take care of, to see to their needs and love them. I would do more if I had means and make a difference to my community.

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