BENEFITING: HOPE REFORMED CHURCH
EVENT DATE: May 11, 2013
Dear Friends and Friends of Friends,
On May 11, 2013, my daughter Elyse and I will run the 25K (15.5 miles) Fifth Third River Bank Run in Grand Rapids, MI (I must be insane!). We are running to support a project that we have been involved with since 2007. And we’d like to invite you to consider sponsoring us and being a part this adventure.
We are running for “Vietnam Orphans – HIV Initiative”
There are thousands of children in Vietnam who were born with HIV and are left orphaned as their parents die from AIDS. From the beginning of their lives, and through no fault of their own, they are left in a very difficult position. Being an orphan is hard enough by any measure. Being an orphan infected with HIV presents many additional challenges, including:
- The stigma of living with a disease often associated with drug abuse and certain sexual behaviors.
- Difficult and expensive medical treatments when access to basic nutrition is difficult.
- Uncertainty of life ahead, the feeling of “living in the dark.”
- Rejection, discrimination and isolation from others.
- Ongoing sicknesses associated with the disease.
- Difficult to develop self worth and self-esteem.
- Inaccessibility of higher education or employment.
- Hopelessness for a normal life.
Many of the orphaned children are lucky enough to find a caretaker, who is most often a relative. In most cases these caretakers are taking on another person to raise, support and feed, when they do not have the resources to even take care of themselves or the family they already have.
We have been supporting a project of care for HIV infected orphans, under the leadership of good friend Mai Thi Kim Hoang (a.k.a. Hoang), who has dedicated her life to provide support for these children and their caretakers. In the past, our activities have been focused in Ho Chi Minh City. We are now supporting Hoang as she expands this important work to more impoverished areas in Tay Ninh province near Cambodia and Tra Vinh province in the Mekong Delta region.
You can help support this work by sponsoring Elyse and I in the May 11 run, with a donation from this website. We are running to raise $3,000. A donation of any size will be greatly appreciated. We’d like to also invite you to get your children involved. We believe that all children can understand the critical situation of other children, and know that they can help make a difference in this world.
We have made a website where you, and your children, can learn more about this new initiative and the situation of children with HIV/AIDS. Please check it out!
Hope Church RCA, of Holland, Michigan, will provide administrative support for the collection and processing of donations and fund transfers for the Vietnam Children with HIV project. All funds will be used for project materials & expenses. I am grateful for their kind support.
Please join us on this initiative, and think of us as we cross the finish line!
We thank you for your support.
Dan and Elyse