Caring for sick or dying parents infected with HIV/AIDS was one of the causes preventing children attending school. In 2005, IGF built a 60 bed AIDS hospice which gave dignified and compassionate care to dying adults, enabling the children to continue attending school and receive an education.
Fast forward to 2015, and the type of care at the IGF hospice has changed significantly. A large number of patients are still offered daily care here, but all of these patients are children. In the late 2000s, due to international funding, the Ugandan government made HIV treatment (ARVs) available for free at certain medical centres.
Gloryland Junction has morphed from HIV hospice to Children’s Medical Centre, providing medical care for HIV+ children, residential care for special cases and a malnourished babies feeding program.
In this program, nutritional and medical experts have designed a feeding program that includes formula, cow’s milk, bread, fruit, eggs, vegetables and greens to ensure that children grow up healthy and strong in their critical first years.
IGF also provides care, treatment and education to nursing mothers infected with HIV to prevent and/or eliminate HIV transmission from mother to child through its comprehensive Antenatal Care Services and the provision of formula milk and alternative feeding for infants.
Baby Denis and his mother are just one of IGF’s success stories in relation to the services provided:
“As I looked at the skeletal body of baby Denis, I held no hope he would survive. His 18-year-old mother was wheeled in by a wheelbarrow, ravaged by AIDS, she had no strength to lift her head. The nurses swung into action. Over several weeks, Denis began to drink and gain weight, his Grandmother being taught how to sterilise bottles and make formula, and ARVs given to the mother. Ten months later, it was a celebration day when I said goodbye and they were discharged. Now strong in body, she was given kilos of food to carry home and we thank God He has given them a second chance at life.” – Irene Gleeson, September 2011.