U.N. World Food Program to Donate Food to Families Affected by HIV/AIDS
The United Nations World Food Program will coordinate a food donation program for families affected by HIV/AIDS in four Asian nations, according to an agency statement released yesterday at a one-day conference in Bangkok, Thailand, the Associated Press reports. The effort -- which centers on Cambodia, China, Laos and Myanmar -- aims to help families whose "breadwinner" is HIV-positive and unable to work. "For the poorest of the poor, who are the people WFP assists, the onset of HIV/AIDS for the chief income-earner can shatter the entire family unit," John Powell, director of WFP's Asian division, said (Associated Press, 3/4). "Food aid would also serve as the financial glue to keep the family intact. ... Otherwise, the children, for example, could be forced to prostitute themselves or to go and live on the streets," he added. The plan was developed after a WFP-led mission last month to the four nations. Investigators from WFP, UNAIDS, WHO, the Food and Agriculture Organization and UNDP interviewed affected families, government officials and health workers to determine the food needs and the best strategies for incorporating food aid into home-based care. The plan may also be applied to countries in southern Africa (Agence France-Presse, 3/4).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.