It is estimated by the Government of India that there are currently around 2.40million inhabitants living with HIV. Children aged under the years of 15 are estimated to account for 3.5% of all infections, while 83% are the in age group of 15-49 years. Of all HIV infections, 39% (930,000) are among women (World Bank 2012).
As if living with HIV/AIDS isn’t enough, the social stigma surrounding the disease makes it increasingly difficult for affected people to integrate in their community. Often individuals and whole families become marginalized, and have little or no access to legal protection of their basic human rights. This is a violation in itself.
The effect is felt greatly by women and children also. The rates of infection have unfortunately been increasing due to the bridging of population groups. The unequal power relations prevalent in India mean that women hold a low status, something that effects their access to human, financial and economic assets, making them more vulnerable in terms of negotiating safe sex both in and out of marriage. Unfortunately a tragic result is often the birth of a baby born with the infection.
Friendship With World assists HIV/AIDS affected children with monthly provisions of nutritious food for themselves and their families. Each month we support 25 families by distributing these necessities, and provide professional medical advice on general health, healthy eating, personal hygiene and cleanliness. This program caters to the need of the family and communities through education, encouragement and diet. The diet of 25 neediest families is identified every year from the poorest community in Jalandhar and supplemented with most needed groceries and provisions for a month. This program is a gateway for Friendship With Worlds education, medical and livelihood programs. The Feeding Program leads to an increased level of hope and dignity for recipients, increasing their capacity to effectively fight against poverty. Friendship With World also conducts 5 Health Camps per year in this area giving medical checks to these families and those in need from the surrounding area, this also raises awareness of the key issue.