“We are facing the biggest unrecognised humanitarian disaster on the planet.”
Ian Govendir, Founder of AIDS Orphan
I was diagnosed with HIV in the early 1980's, but it was not until 1996 that I developed AIDS. I have lived and survived through the whole epidemic.
I have been working in the charity sector for 25 years, and in that time, I had the good fortune to work with HRH Diana the Princess of Wales. She was my inspiration for starting up AiDS Orphan. I really wanted her to be my patron in 1997, but tragic events meant this was not to be.
I believe that had she survived, she would have been interested in the work that we are undertaking; to help children who are infected or affected by HIV/AIDS.
I always refer to a little girl who I met in 2010 whose name is Diana. She is a double orphan, was suffering from TB, was rendered deaf by having caught meningitis when she was very young and is living with HIV. It has been our good fortune for the last 6 years to be able to give Diana a loving home, food refuge and the opportunity to attend school. In fact, she is now growing up to be quite the confident young woman with good prospects ahead of her.
I am proud to have started Aids Orphan and if the Princess was alive today I would have taken much delight in introducing the two Dianas.
I was struck down by this life-threatening disease and am now living a normal life with no threat of infecting anyone else as I am fully medicated. There is no reason why any child should be left behind and I am sure HRH Diana the princess of Wales would agree with this sentiment.
To mark the passing of HRH I have given a number of interviews that can be seen on Sky Atlantic, Sky News and Channel 4 toward the end of August I do hope you can catch the interviews and also help celebrate the life and works of a remarkable woman who inspired me to start up Aids Orphan.
Will you help me to continue to deliver this life saving work where no child who is affected or infected with HIV will not be allowed to live a normal and productive life?