Fr3deR1cK Taylor via Crowdrise
October 06, 2010
A Feature Documentary
Produced by Tomorrow Pictures Inc.
Producer: Ellen Barnard
After The Fall, HIV Grows UP, offers an intimate portrait of a group of teens and young adults in Romania. They are the long–term survivors of the pediatric HIV/AIDS epidemic that swept Romania in the late 80s and early 90s as Nicolai Ceasescu’s communist dictatorship and reign of terror came to an end.
Over 12,000 cases of HIV infection among children were recorded. They contracted the virus mainly in state run hospitals and orphanages where they had been abandoned by parents who were encouraged to leave their children in the care of the state when they could not afford to look after them. Dangerous medical and blood transfusion practices that were conducted in these institutions combined with the overcrowding precipitated this crisis.
This documentary takes a look at what happened, and at the issues and challenges these young people face as they come of age and want to integrate into society, marry, have families and embark on successful careers. They are survivors with a variety of stories to tell that are both heartbreaking and triumphant.
These young people face uncertainty based on the difficulties of navigating a system that isn’t entirely prepared for them to be adults. Their journey offers drama and disappointment and many lessons for a global community as large populations of HIV infected children around the world become long-term survivors. From children who had no voice, to young adults with a message to share, this is the story of pediatric HIV in Romania.