Every year thousands of children are born HIV+ in Telangana, India--the state in which Agape works. Approximately 35% of untreated HIV+ children die within the first year of their life, 50% by their second year, and 80% die before they are five. Even if an orphaned child has living relatives, often they refuse to take them fearing social stigma, contagion and higher living expenses. The need to care for these children--the poorest of the poor--is huge.
In the 15 years that Agape has been in Hyderabad, we have become known in the community for the care we provide. It is often the first place the local hospitals or police bring AIDS orphaned or infected children. By taking the children in, feeding, caring for them, and monitoring their drug therapy, we make sure that these children don’t become yet another grim statistic.
Roughly half of Agape’s children are HIV+. We work hard to ensure that every one of them is cared for, loved and educated. Our goal is to make our children self-sufficient, independent and productive human beings, irrespective of their HIV status.
OUR FOCUS IS SIMPLE ... to care for children orphaned by AIDS. Each one of our children deserves a future. At Agape we give our girls and boys a healthy start, the opportunity to learn, and protection from harm. Generous supporters like you, with your tax-deductible gift, give our kids a chance in life.
When a child comes to Agape, they are first stabilized, and evaluated by the local pediatric HIV hospital to determine their medical needs. In the following months, as the child becomes physically stronger with nutritious food and medical treatment, the transformation in their health is remarkable.
We believe strongly in education, and the importance of providing our children with the skills and capabilities to succeed in life. We operate our own school in order to provide a quality education to all of our children--including those who are HIV+, and therefore would not be accepted in most local schools.
Agape’s high school graduates either join the workforce or attend college--something Agape is committed to supporting. Currently, there are nearly 30 Agape students attending college to study accounting, teaching, engineering and other fields. Some of Agape’s first children have even gone on to graduate school and several now have successful careers.
Medical attention and education will only get a child so far. We provide the individual love and attention a child needs not just to survive, but to thrive. Agape is the only home virtually all our orphaned children have known, and we surround them with an environment and people that protect and care for them. When they go away to college, Agape is the home they return to during the weekends and the holidays. They are part of the Agape family.