We met Patty, who helps run the Agape Home AIDS orphanage, our first day at the Eubanks, and were immediately huge fans of hers. She has a peacefulness and a gentleness about her that is unique to find. We tracked her down at Agape Home before we left Thailand-- here she is, as documented by one of the kiddos who got their mitts on the camera:
Agape Home provides holistic care for AIDS orphans (85% of the kids there have also been diagnosed as HIV+), including antiretrovirals that have vastly extended their life expectancy, job training, foster homes in the surrounding area, and a beautiful facility for them to call home.
There is also a Mother and Baby Home designed to allow HIV+ mothers to stay with their kids. We became quite somber at the sight of a woman who appeared very, very old wandering slowly around the facility, pregnant and clearly in the late stages of AIDS. Patty later told us that she is only 16 years old, and that since moving to the center and receiving proper physical and spiritual care, she has visibly calmed down. It's a sobering sight that makes me so, so grateful for an ever-wider spectrum of blessings in my own life, and I only wish I could do more to help places like this. Donating will help them expand their foster care capacities and job training facilities, creating a sort of village of support for kids who are moving out of the home, as well as help continue to provide the advanced medications, healthy food, and clean living area that are so crucial for these kids.
Will you join me in sponsoring one of these sweet kids? It's easy even to make a one-time donation; I included the link on the righthand side there! Much like the project in Bolivia, it's really nice to know exactly where your money is going and how effective it will actually be.
I'll leave you with the parting shot I got on our way out-- a little sweetheart who rushed to the window to bid us adieu with a huge grin. Oh, my heart!