How much of the money is used in Zimbabwe?
Almost all! > 99% of our annual income. The remainder goes on audit fees, website registration and bank charges (€475 in 2010, = 0.6% of total expenditure of €80,368). Audited accounts available – please ask if you’d like to see them.
Will your gift really make a difference?
€14.50 pays for a month’s supply of Paracetamol for HBC patients of a village. Opportunistic infections often include fevers.
€9.50 supplies a 3 months food pack to a child who has been orphaned, living in a Child Headed Home
€4.50 pays for school breakfast for a child for a term (3 months). Bowl of porridge every school day. (This cost reflects the economies of scale of providing 2,500 breakfasts a day!)
€6.60 pays school fees for a term for a child at primary level who is unable to pay


Where did the name “Matilda” come from?
Matilda was a friend of Richard and Wendy’s in Bulawayo, who died of AIDS in 1999. She was one of those handful of people any of us is privileged to meet in a lifetime whose qualities awe us: dignity, patience, humility, kindness, self-control. She contracted AIDS through a contaminated blade used to remove a cyst on her wrist.


Do HBC volunteers cure AIDS patients?
No. That’s outside the role of HBC teams. The big difference HBC volunteers make is through the psychosocial support they bring to their patients and the family members. Typically when AIDS becomes full-blown and all a person’s money has been spent fighting opportunistic infections, they go home to the village for the end stages of the disease.
Psychosocial support is a circle of care, protection and support to provide for a family’s emotional, spiritual and social needs as it goes through bereavement, especially if this includes being orphaned.


Are people still dying of AIDS?
Yes. Not as many as 10 years ago, though. Access to anti-retroviral therapies is improving. If the patient can get him/herself to the nearest dispensing centre, they will be prescribed eventually. But transport is EXPENSIVE. A week’s wage could be used for one round trip to a rural dispensing centre, so folk sometimes wait until they are dying before borrowing the funds to pay for transport. Several visits are required for tests, control of opportunistic infections, before starting anti-retroviral therapy. Sometimes people leave it too late to get to the hospital.


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What happens the kids who’ve lost their parents?
They suffer.
Always in sub-Saharan Africa, prior to the AIDS pandemic, orphans used to be absorbed into the extended family. In 2009 1.3 million people died of AIDS in the region ( Most of these were parents of young children. Because there have been so many deaths families are over-stretched and can’t manage to provide for any more children. Some grandparents have over 20 children in their care.

A new unit has emerged, the “child headed home” (CHH), with the children trying to fend for themselves. Combined with 8 years of failed harvests in the west of Zimbabwe, this is a recipe for disaster. These children are particularly vulnerable to abuse. In an effort to protect children in CHH, the Zimbabwean government has introduced a policy that all CHH should have someone appointed as “guardian”. 


How many have been helped?
Between our 4 partner teams approx. 6000 patients are currently receiving care in their own homes. Over the years this adds up! Yet it is still only a drop in the bucket…


How do you send the funds?
Banks are operating in Zimbabwe at present, so we can transfer funds to Zimbabwean banks.

  • Nehemiah Project in Bulawayo has its own bank account
  • Funds for CCP are sent via the book-keeper we pay to keep accounts
  • Tshelanyemba Hospital has a bank account.
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