Saturday, September 09, 2006

Day 281

I continue to repeat how the children of this program amaze me, but it is just me speaking from my heart. There was a youth art show today in which children both HIV+ and negative showed their works. The resident artists of the Bulawayo Art Gallery acted as coaches to the children. At first glance the paintings were just simply childrens drawings and paintings, but then you heard the children describe what they had painted.
On boy told me he was painting HIV in jail, it had been arrested so that it could not affect children anymore. Another was showing HIV being sent in a rocket to another planet where it would not kill anyone. Still there were more, one in particular that had children playing and stated, ‘I have HIV, but you can still play with me.’
At the end of the day all the children were given notebooks and bags from one of the local clothing stores, and a few were chosen and awarded prizes. This is where I need to thank my sister, mother, father and friend Steph. The prizes were the toys that they sent to me in care packages. The children loved them!

I read an article in one of the US News and World Reports, that my parents sent me, and it was about Zimbabwe and how the country is suffering from over 1000% inflation and the once highly profitable farming industry has been destroyed due to a governmental policy redistributing the land to local war veterans that either had no interest in farming or were not equipped to do so. This country is a mess, and not just because of the 20% HIV rate, or the average life span of 34 years for women. It almost seems like the leaders are so far removed from the suffering that the people I encounter have to overcome in order to obtain the basics…food and shelter. Selfishly, I am looking forward to leaving in 3 months, but at times my heart feels like even the simplest effort made by a few is in some small way putting smiles on people´s faces. The ARVs that MSF is supplying is making it possible for people to push off death for a few more years. The international policy of sanctions may hurt the govern but it is neglecting those that need assistance.

Tonight I will go and have a beer with my house mates and do the things that put smiles of my face in order to continue working tomorrow.


Blogger Michelle and the Boys said...


I like the paintings, they look like my house. . .Keep your chin up, come home soon the boys and I and one Shadow miss you terribly, the work seems rewarding and amazing, love you - -michelle :)

5:00 PM  
Blogger diego the boxer said...

hi nance
its nice to see that the kids still enjoy and get to see each others' talents - painting/drawing.
a few more mos and youre coming back.
make sure the rats dont win anymore=)
missing you

8:16 PM  

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