Focus HIV pos children

Camps for Vulnerable Children.

Pending funding, Mpilonhle provides "day camps" for approximately 200 children ages 5-18 with congenital HIV infection.  Each child attends at least 8 day camps per year and are held on the premises of Mpilonhle, where there are large meetings rooms and outdoor areas, including outdoor play areas that can be used.  The camps are staffed by nurses, counselors, social workers and psychologists from Mpilonhle, and nurses and support staff from the Department of Health and the Department of Social Development.  

Services during the camps include monthly disbursement of antiretroviral medication; medical screening for any complications of new illnesses or problems; assessment of intellectual and physical development, and identification and support of any disabilities that are common to children with HIV.  

As age-appropriate the children's diagnosis is discussed during individual counseling sessions, including the implications of that diagnosis which is rarely done in clinics, even for adolescents.  

As the children grow older counseling on issue related to sex and maturation are provided.  

Mpilonhle also works with parents and guardians who will attend at least two sessions annually.

The camps are aimed to be fun filled with sports, cultural, and arts activities.   

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