London Free Press Examines HIV/AIDS in South Africa Following Photographer’s Trip to Country
The Ontario, Canada, London Free Press on Saturday began a series on the HIV/AIDS epidemic in South Africa, including photographs from Dave Chidley, a photographer for the Free Press who recently visited the country. Summaries of some of the articles appear below.
- "A death grip": Chidley, whose trip to South Africa was funded by the Canadian International Development Agency, called the country's HIV/AIDS crisis "staggering." Orphans in the country who have lost at least one parent to AIDS are "overwhelmingly black, overwhelmingly poor and overwhelmingly concentrated in former black townships," but they have "hope and spirit" and are "determined to make it in the world, despite the odds," the Free Press reports (Chidley , London Free Press, 7/30).
- "The pandemic": The article profiles London, Ontario, artist Hendrikus Bervoets, who is the "driving force" behind Artists International Direct Support, which raises funds for women and children affected by HIV/AIDS through sales of limited-edition artwork prints from world-renowned artists. The organization so far has raised about $164,000. Bervoets also has launched a program called Kids for Kids that helps young South Africans affected by the epidemic by selling the artwork of high school students (Chidley , London Free Press, 7/30).
- "The orphans": More than one million orphans who have either lost a parent to AIDS-related causes or are HIV-positive themselves live in South Africa, and "the crisis is only just starting," according to the Free Press. However, several organizations, including Othandweni and the Cotlands Baby Sanctuary, are working to help provide orphans with housing, food and medical care (Chidley, London Free Press, 8/1).