Sunday, June 10, 2012

What does AIDS look like to you?

About once each month, Lea Toto takes a Saturday to train the children on a topic of relevance to them--and there is a ton of options to teach about! This past month, the age group was from about 8 years to 12 years and I decided to go back to basics a little and find out what they knew about HIV, and then give them some information on what HIV is (and what it isn't).

One of my major challenges in working with the age group was the issue of disclosure--I was teaching them about the details of HIV, without letting on to them that they were positive. Some children can reach age 14 and not know their status (their parents tell them the drugs they take are for something else).

Note: After taking some shots while at the training, I found out that this was not allowed. I completely understand why, and the following photos are to depict what was taught, not who was there.

I started by asking the kids what they did know about HIV--'What is HIV?' and 'How do you get it?'

For the most part, they were right on the button! I was pleasantly surprised.

To discover their honest perspective on HIV/AIDS, we asked them to draw 'What AIDS looks like to them'.

This exercise is a common one in teaching children about HIV/AIDS, and always seems to bring out some varied responses. Many drawings can depict the stigma that surrounds HIV in the Kibera community, while some can range from silly to serious (to completely unrelated). Here are some of their responses!

I really appreciate anyone taking the time to read my blog while I'm away--it really means the world to me! My apologies for being MIA for so long--but, as promised, I've added some new photos below that I took around Nairobi. Feel free to check them out!

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