World AIDS Day 2009

is today. I’ve thought a lot about this throughout the day. Mostly when I gave my kids their various medicines to combat things like I listed before. I thought about how easy it was for me to go to the doctor, then to the pharmacy, then home in a matter of an hour. In another day, the kids will be back to normal.

I thought about this because HIV (which causes AIDS) is a preventable, treatable disease. There is no cure, yet, but it’s not a death sentence anymore. For the last year I’ve done considerable research on this topic and in that last year a lot has been done on behalf of AIDS orphans and people living with HIV. The CDC finally overruled a law that had been in effect for decades making it more difficult for people to adopt HIV+ kids (that law was signed by GW but didn’t go through until recently) amongst other issues.

The government now recognizes that a person coming into the country who happens to be HIV+ is no threat to the public.

All of these are good things that are happening in the HIV/AIDS circuit. The bad? In Ethiopia alone, there are 92,000 kids living with HIV/AIDS. 33.4 MILLION people are living with AIDS worldwide. It’s a global emergency.

We can sit and say, “It’s not in my backyard”, but you’d be wrong. It IS in your backyard and even if it wasn’t, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do anything about it.

There are many ways to help. 2 ways we’re helping. We’re signing up to sponsor a child from AHOPE. We were able to tour the facilities when we were picking up our Tariku. You would not believe what this place does for HIV+ orphans (and, I would argue, people like me who had previously been rather out of touch with the HIV crisis). We’re also participating in the 5 for 5 campaign. Two things that I’ve done from the comfort of my couch. If we can do it, you can too, so do it.

We all know how passionate I am about water, but I must say my passion for the AIDS crisis is quite strong as well. How can it not be? When I try to see the world through God’s eyes it’s pretty obvious these brothers and sisters are crying out.

Proverbs 21:13 If a man shuts his ears to the cry of the poor, he too will cry out and not be answered.

If they’re not crying out, it’s because they’re without hope. And frankly, I’m not okay with that either.

If you’re not inspired by Proverbs (really, how could you not be?) how about this guy.

The first thing I decided to do was never say the word “AIDS” without putting the word “emergency” following it. … Six and a half thousand Africans dying every day of a preventable, treatable disease is not a cause; it’s an emergency. … —-Bono

But seriously. As I look at Tariku, at Trysten and at Dailah I realize there is so little that separates them and 92,000 kids in Ethiopia. Because I’m a mom I can hear the cries of the mothers across the world who are praying they die before their kids.

ABC is not the answer. One could argue the things I’ve done from my couch today aren’t either, but it’s a start. Why don’t you start today too?

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