A month ago, children from a small village called Hasegaon, not very far from Mumbai, were ecstatic. They had got the chance to appear on a national television channel. They sang and danced during the Ganesh festival special program of a popular Marathi channel. The cherry on top of this cake was that the kids got to meet Bollywood superstar Jackie Shroff. These kids were the inmates of Sevalaya, a shelter home for kids suffering from HIV/AIDS.
The scene at the home changed from happy to sad in a matter of days, though. Thirty of the eighty inmates of Sevalaya fell ill soon after the show. The organization that looks after their day-to-day needs was not financially prepared to face such a situation. It was a difficult task to collect the necessary funds. Somehow, they were able to pay for the hospital bills and medicines required by the kids who had fallen ill.
“Such situations arise regularly at Sevalaya. The kids have very low immunity as they are HIV positive. With all of them being in close quarters of each other, a number of kids can fall ill at the same time. I have seen Sevalaya struggle at such times. This is why I believe the organization must have an emergency corpus ready at all times,” said Anand Mangnale, an associate of Sevalaya. It led him to create a crowdfunding campaign to raise funds to initiate this emergency corpus.
WHAT DOES SEVALAYA DO FOR HIV+
The organization runs a shelter home at Hasegaon where 80 HIV positive kids live. Through its various programs, Sevalaya works towards creating awareness about HIV/AIDS in a country where talking about the disease in public is still a stigma. Some of the kids are also involved in ‘Happy Music’ initiative. They present entertaining shows in order to raise funds for Sevalaya. It also started a shelter for adults after realizing that even after they become adults these kids face discrimination.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
Contribute to the emergency corpus by following this link. When you have done that, spread the word about Sevalaya and the campaign around. Share this with your family and friends. Help bring in more contributions.