This brief article speaks to the challenges in Swaziland of providing care for the people who are suffering from HIV and AIDS. We met with some very heroic Christians when I traveled to Swaziland last year. The Diocese of Swaziland has a program to train and support parish health ministers to do the work described in the article Linked below.
News, Health Systems Trust: “Swaziland’s home-based caregivers are too few and too poorly paid to cope with the growing numbers of bedridden AIDS patients, but in the absence of adequate health facilities and trained professionals, they are seen as the immediate answer to a national emergency.
Over 40 percent of sexually active Swazis are HIV positive, but only a few thousand are on antiretroviral (ARV).
Caregivers provide individual attention to bedridden patients at their homes: feeding, washing and dressing them, reading to them, passing on
health advice and offering companionship to help lessen their isolation. Some are volunteers, while others receive a government stipend.”
The picture above is of a meeting with the parish and diocesan HIV/AIDS Ministry volunteers at St. Alban’s parish in the Diocese of Swaziland.