Saturday, January 19, 2013 was HIV Community Service Day in Lawra. It was a truly blessed day thanks to team work by friends, family and youngsters on both sides of the globe.
The main focus of our program was presentation of the exquisitely beautiful quilt stitched by my American friends Jane Johnson and Wendy Stafford. They were assisted by neighbors, friends and co-workers who were willing to stitch embellishments on pieces of fabric provided by women here in Lawra who are living with HIV and AIDS. It was truly a labor of love.
The theme for the day (and the quilt) was “Care, Compassion and Respect”. Here is an excerpt from my speech delivered at the Community Center that day:
The idea for this project came from the world-famous AIDS memorial quilt which was created back in 1985 in the U.S. as a remembrance of those who were dying from AIDS. These days, AIDS in the U.S. is very much a disease that is under control.
When my friends and family back in America heard and read about how AIDS is still alive and well here in Ghana, they asked what they could do to recognize the struggles and sacrifices of those living with AIDS.
So we came up with the idea of a quilt made up of pieces of fabric donated by women in this very community who are struggling with HIV and AIDS.
By stitching those pieces of fabric and assembling them into a beautiful quilt, my friends in America felt like they were extending a hand of love to their sisters here in Ghana. After all, since we are all children of God, we are sisters and brothers no matter where we are in the world.
Expressing care, compassion and respect to people living with HIV and AIDS is a way of reaching out to people at a time when they need as much support as possible.
People living with HIV and AIDS (PLWHAs) are faced with many problems apart from suffering from the diseases that come as a result of the breakdown of their immune system.
As the disease...