Community Based HIV/AIDS Care and Support Project

Funded By   : Palmyrah Workers Development Society – Abbott Fund
Primary Target : People Living with HIV/ AIDS; Children Living with HIV/AIDS, Orphan and Vulnerable Children and their families.
Area of work : Melur and Kottampatti Blocks of Madurai District.

The project works for enhancing the life of people living with HIV/AIDS, Children infected and affected by HIV/AIDS and their families. The project is supported by Palmyrah Workers Development Society (PWDS), and it reaches out to 15 Panchayats comprising of 56 villages in Melur and Kottampatti block of Madurai district.

The care and support project provides the following services to people affected by and living with HIV/AIDS: Psychosocial support, health care services, Voluntary Counselling and Testing Centre (VCTC), food and nutritional support, economic support, emergency relief, direct services to children affected by AIDS, and capacity building activities.

Further, the project provides information regarding conservation of social rights. Support from community and religious leaders is sought for the promotion of the cause of the project. The staffs also help the affected/infected people in acquiring Government and other non-governmental agencies support.

Support groups consisting of People Living with HIV/AIDS/Children Affected by AIDS are formed and guided by the team. Setting up of a care team consisting of people living with HIV/AIDS has also helped the programme considerably.

Denial of houses, being deserted by kith and kin and sometimes even the families themselves, being thrown out of jobs, denial of property rights, restriction to children from entering schools etc. are some of the chief problems that people living with HIV/AIDs have to face everyday. Young widows of victims of HIV/AIDS infected persons, high in number, are treated badly and sometimes they are subjected to HIV/AIDS infection due to unsafe extramarital sexual relationships.

The situation has changed after the project made its presence in the area. People accept people living with HIV/AIDS. Family members who rejected them have come forward to support them in starting income generation programmes. Medical aid has been arranged at low costs and sometimes free of cost for the needy.