Yamoussoukro (Agenzia Fides) - Since 2012, the diocesan Caritas of Man has been involved in raising awareness and psychosocial support of over 500 orphan children due to AIDS, according to the "Memory Box" method developed in South Africa. To draw on this experience and to put it into practice in other dioceses of the country and in the structures responsible for the fight against HIV/AIDS in the Ivory Coast, 15 diocesan Caritas, representatives of the Ministry of Health and the fight against HIV/AIDS and the Ministry of Women, Family and Children met from 2 to 3 December 2019 in Yamoussoukro to understand the principles of this method.
The seminar organized by the Dominican brother Philippe Denis, founding member of the South African NGO "Center Sinomlando", technical partner of the diocesan Caritas of Man and by Sister Marie Rose SEHI responsible for the project of taking charge of HIV/AIDS orphans in the aforementioned diocese.
Brother Denis offered some suggestions for accepting and managing pain. The exercise of "The river of life" allowed the participants to remember their moments of joy and sadness in order to find in them the positive elements that could help pull themselves up. An approach aimed at helping the people affected by pain, illness or loss of something essential (work, divorce ...) to start from scratch.
Present in Yamoussoukro, Fr. Jean Pierre Tiemele, National Executive Secretary of Caritas Ivory Coast greeted this seminar which will allow the actors involved in the psychosocial accompaniment of orphaned children or those living with HIV AIDS to be more effective.
The Ivory Coast, according to the data of the UN program for AIDS (UNAIDS), and the country most affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic in West Africa, with a seropositivity rate that fluctuates between 2 and 3, 5%, 25 thousand new infections, almost 22 thousand cases of deaths registered in recent years and over 400 thousand orphans and or children in precarious situation. Faced with this dramatic situation, the Ivorian State has committed itself not only to retroceding the pandemic, but also to accompanying those affected, in particular children, by establishing the National Care Program for children who are orphaned and vulnerable due to HIV/AIDS. The Catholic Church, interested in the integral development of man, can only support the government by sharing its competences in this sector, through its social branch which is Caritas. (S.S.) (Agenzia Fides, 5/12/2019)