Shalom Delhi’s work among people infected with HIV/AIDS needs your help.
HIV/AIDS is one of the world’s most serious health and development challenges, and the scale of human suffering brought on by this epidemic has been unimaginable. HIV still exists and continues to ruin households and communities in many nations. India has the third largest number of people living with HIV, with Delhi the capital city seeing an increasing number everyday.
Shalom is raising funds to support its medical services. The average cost of one in patient admission for a person with HIV is Rs 15,000 ( 290 Canadian dollars ) and cost of one out patient visit is Rs 600 ( 12 Canadian dollars). Give to the Shalom AIDS Project.
Most of those with HIV in Delhi are already poor to start with, and HIV pushes them further into poverty. Their bodies are weakened because of frequent infections and malnutrition. Though they have a great need for medical care, it is hard for them to receive it because even today many medical practitioners refuse to treat them out of fear and stigma. Private medical facilities are too expensive and Government hospitals hardly ever admit people with HIV. Many die prematurely, while others are so weak, they lose their jobs and source of livelihood. If the main wage earner is unable to work, then the whole family’s survival is at stake. Family relationships breakdown and children are emotionally and mentally scarred for life. What is tragic is how society’s perception of people with HIV diminishes their own sense of value and worth. For people living with HIV, life is indeed one of extreme hardship and endless struggle.
Kavita is one such woman in Delhi, who at the age of 23 was diagnosed to have HIV. When both she and her HIV positive son became sick with tuberculosis, her husband abandoned them. Her son’s health was deteriorating and she was afraid he would die at the tender age of three. In desperation, she sought help here and there but nothing worked. Till one day she heard about Shalom, a care center dedicated to provide care for people with HIV. Here both she and her son received free medical treatment, counseling and prayer. Slowly, their health improved and today she is able to work and earn a livelihood. She is happy that she has friends at Shalom who truly care, who value her as a person and are there for her when she needs them.
Shalom Project, is a unit of Emmanuel Hospital Association, a Christian Health and Development organization in India. It was set up in 2001 to provide care for people with HIV in Delhi. It is the love of Christ that motivates the staff of Shalom to care for this vulnerable group of people, whom society at large rejects and looks down upon. Shalom’s approach is holistic in which the whole person is cared for, and it seeks to restore health in all dimensions ie physical, emotional, psychological, social and spiritual.
For medical treatment, Shalom has an outpatient clinic and a 10 bed in patient facility. Currently it is the only such center of its kind in the whole of Delhi, that provides good quality hospital services at a highly subsidized
rate specifically for people with HIV. About 2000 HIV positive patients are registered in the clinic and almost everyday more new ones are referred here for care. Numerous patients, who had once been admitted at Shalom in a very sick condition, are now healthy and able to earn and take care of their families. Shalom also has a home based care program for long term rehabilitation of families, and mobilizes church volunteers in the city to reach out to them. Shalom’s vision for people living with HIV/AIDS is for them to experience true peace, holistic health and abundance of life.