Stories

MEO Center in Burundi

Personalized aid makes a difference

Huguette is an orphan. She is also HIV-positive.

Huguette and her grandmother are their family’s sole survivors. Her grandmother has lost all her children and the pain from having lost her parents has made Huguette’s life extremely difficult. The little girl barely talks, she is mostly absent and apathetic, and only occasionally attends school. This naturally has had a negative impact on her learning, greatly threatening her education and future.

When little Huguette arrived at the MEO Center, the first thing our social assistant had to do was gain her grandmother’s trust. She did so by talking to hear about Huguette’s disease and by explaining to her that her granddaughter’s life expectancy could improve considerably with the therapy currently available.

She had to know that it was possible for Huguette to live with HIV.

Following this first successful encounter, Huguette was encouraged to play with the other children at the center. Little by little, she started opening up and making friends. She was regaining hope. Eventually, she even took part in the MEO’s sketch group!

At school, thanks to the social assistants’ support and encouragement, Huguette has improved her attendance. She has also improved her grades and has regained confidence in her abilities. The little girl is managing to see life apart from her illness.

But the impact of this change goes beyond Huguette. Through her experiences, Huguette has been able o show everyone around her that change is possible. Starting with the children she played with at the MEO Center and continuing with her classmates, neighbors and grandmother, Huguette is a living example of the difference psycho-social support can make. More importantly, aid based on and individual and unique relationship, aid built on love and care.

 

We believe…
In aid based on an individual and unique relationship; aid built on love and care.