Welfare Project in South Africa

Bhante visits a remote village in Kenya where many children have lost their parents to AIDS.

In this age of disposable technology, we often take for granted the high tech equipment that makes our lives so much easier. In many parts of Africa, people do not count on these luxuries. This year I was invited to visit Durban, South Africa by a South African gentlemen who lives in Key West, Florida, by the name of Spider.

He was making a documentary in Durban to help generate support for the needy. As part of our tour, we visited Saint Mary's Hospital in Marianhill. This facility, which is serving impoverished local communities, is itself in great need of assistance. After touring the hospital, I had a long conversation with one of the administrators.

At this site, over 500 babies are born per month. Over 50% are born with HIV or full-blown Aids. The majority of these children will die within their first three years of life. You can imagine rows and rows of infant cribs holding sick or dying children.

As I entered into some of the rooms, the sights, sounds and smells of the whole environment, overwhelmed me. It was a very difficult experience for me to see these babies, many just born, who are dying of aids. A nurse explained to me that the entire life expectancy of these children is most often spent inside this ward. Clearly there is so much we can do to help this hospital and the lives of those who suffer.

This year we were able to donate 16 used computers in Africa. Twelve computers were sent to the Marianhill Hospital in South Africa. Most of the computers will be used in the aids babies sections of the hospital. The shipment also included assorted medical supplies including boxes of latex gloves, blood drawing kits, a manual resuscitator, and seven pairs of crutches.

As you might understand organizing a shipment like this is a lot of work. Thank you for those who donated the computers and those of you who help with packaging, transportation, and preparing the shipment.