MSC HIV/Aids Response
We MSC (Missionarii Sacratisimi Cordis) see the heart of Christ as a symbol of God’s love. Faith in the power of love motivates us to serve humankind everywhere. We strive to be attentive to human needs and aspirations, respecting the desire of a person for love, freedom and justice. We reach out to those who suffer, seek to identify the causes and discern a response in the light of the Gospel.
In order to become more concretely involved in the prevention of HIV and Aids and in the support of those infected and affected, we formed the MSC HIV/Aids Response in 2002.
We support initiatives in our local communities that respond to the needs for spiritual reflection, education and empowerment, and care for the sick and the orphans. We promote in a special way a holistic approach on the meaning of human sexuality.
Orphans: The Hidden Face of AIDS
The Holy Rosary Parish in Ivory Park (Midrand) works together with the NPO “Philani Support Group” in the care for orphans.
A group of orphans were asked about the problems they face in their lives. The main problem they expressed was not poverty, lack of food or any other material aspects of their lives. In Rapudi Mokgadi’s (16) words: “Our main problem is that we are considered second class citizens, even in our extended families. We see ourselves so, especially at occasions as school trips or farewells and at feasts when others wear new clothes.”
Orphans Today - Stars Tomorrow
At the end of a workshop ‘Education for Life’ in 2003, a group of orphans decided to start a support group to become the “Stars of Tomorrow” as they call themselves. They chose as motto: “Building the future”. Nona Mokgadi says: “We have to build our own future, as nobody else can do it for us”.
The volunteers of Philani Support Group were touched to tears when Christa Kgolungoane (18) said in a vote of thanks: “Yes, our parents died. But we don’t feel like orphans any more, as the people of Philani are our father and mothers now”.
Inspired by the Congolese experience ‘MSC HIV/Aids Response’ develops and promotes ‘In the Image of God, fully human’, programs for children and youth. These programs can be integrated with existing catechesis and youth structures.
We are confident that as we realize this dream the HIV infection rate will come down.
We offer Different Workshops
MSC HIV/Aids Response supports Sexual Education Workshops for the orphans. In the session on ‘My Family Tree’ they are asked to reflect what their parents mean for them. It always becomes very emotional, as their memories are often vague or about caring for a father or mother dying of Aids.
Jossanda Tsoai leads ‘Emotional Healing and Trauma Management’ workshops with orphans. Often she cries and laughs with them. She says: “We help them to express their deepest feelings and so liberate themselves. You can see these children change by each session”.
"I am Nobelungu and 16 years old. I have done the sexual education program. It was very awakening. It teaches you things about sexuality you don’t learn from TV or your parents. It also makes you take pride in your sexuality. It was beautiful to be given this information so that I can make the right choices in life”.