In 2008, Madonna embarked on a journey to document the experiences of orphans in Malawi, where an estimated one million children had lost parents to HIV/AIDS. I Am Because We Are (IABWA)shared the story of eight orphans, their challenges with adjusting to life without parents, and dreams for the future. Since the conclusion of the film, Raising Malawi has provided critical educational and medical support for these children and their families. During her November trip to Malawi, Madonna paid a visit to the IABWA children. Here’s an update on a few of the children!
- Fanizo: When Raising Malawi met Fanizo, his greatest concern was how he was going to afford his schooling and receive a proper education. With Raising Malawi’s support, Fanizo completed secondary school, took his O-level exams in Blantyre and is now preparing for college where he will focus on either auto mechanics or information and communications technology.
- Luka: Luka was the unfortunate victim of a life-threatening attack. Today, he is doing well at Home of Hope orphanage and is receiving routine care from Dr. Eric Borgstein (both Raising Malawi grantees).
- Wezi: Wezi was infected with the HIV virus that also claimed the lives of her family. Wezi is now in high school and is managing her antiretroviral medications through Baylor Hospital. Wezi has also joined a teen club at the hospital for support.
- Mabvuto: When Mabvuto’s mother Flora died of AIDS in 2007, her dying wish was that her son would grow up to be well educated. Mabvuto is fulfilling his mother’s wish – he has passed his primary school exams and is working with Raising Malawi to select a secondary school.