By Shadrack Andenga Odinga
Lea Toto, a community based program within Mukuru kwa Ruben slums in Nairobi county has reassured the slum dwellers of its commitment to serve HIV positive children.
Speaking exclusively to Ruben Fm on Tuesday morning during the ‘Gumzo Mtaani’ show, Ann Wachira who heads the program was in a jovial mood.
‘We started this program here in Mukuru in the year 2006. We settled here at Ruben center because if it’s reputation to serve the community and that made our work easier. Our main aim is to make sure that no child born HIV positive should lose life,’ said Ann.
As the world celebrated the World International Aids day, Lea Toto at Mukuru kwa Reuben slum has not been left behind.
‘We start the journey with an infant from one month old to when the girl or boy will attain 18 years. It is a process that, if followed, has amazing results. We have an over 60% success rate of those infants who were born HIV positive and by the time they get to a year and a half, their status has changed into negative,’ an assuring Ann said adding that it is a high time stigmatization became a thing of the past and society should take responsibility of that.
The partner program which is a community based care program of the Children of God Relief Institute COGRI, extends Nyumbani care of HIV positive children into the wider community.
The program targets children who are HIV infected and works with families to ensure that they lead a healthy and quality life- positive living. Lea Toto further strives to prevent possibilities of infant infections by their mothers.
As they seek to Empower communities inspired by Christian compassion to provide holistic care to all HIV positive children and their families, Ann Wachira is now calling upon any pregnant mother who has not been tested to do so.