Facing life in African slums
I just returned a few days ago from South Africa where I have been working on a project for the past four years. Each time I go, things are more difficult. More people are sick; more youth are getting infected; more discouragement; more youth leaving school from hopelessness about their futures. And women everywhere are organizing. They are organizing child breakfast programs so no child goes to school hungry. They are organizing volunary hospice care for the dying. They are organizing microfinance programs to build the capacity of their community to do for themselves. This is not often the story you hear... the heroism on the ground. In spite of very diffiult circumstances, people are rising up and organizing themselves. In spite of broken promises by the US government for funding prevention and treatment campaigns, money and services are far away and take a compass to mavigate. My friends in South Africa who completed a recent slum house by house survey and says that infection rates are well above 50% and at night over tea, looking at the winter stars, she suspects it may be as high as 80%. Can you even imagine what this really means. It is time for everyone to give attention to Africa.