AIDSpirit USA is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that is dedicated to providing education, life essentials, and clean water for individuals infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS in the Kayunga District of Uganda. Our faith based non-denominational organization will continue to provide support, compassion, and resources for the Kayunga District, as well as outreach needed in our own local communities.
IN THE BEGINNING
AIDSpirit USA was founded in 1994 by Father Tom Beggin, a Catholic priest from Billings, Montana. A 501(c)3 non-profit organization, AIDSpirit provides resources for those infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS. Starting in 1999, Sister Mary V Maronick joined Father Tom in his efforts to bring AIDSpirit to an international level. Shortly after, a young Ugandan boy named Kenny Mwange approached members of AIDSpirit to sponsor friends of his who were orphaned by HIV/AIDS in the Kayunga District of Uganda. It was then that our educational sponsorship program began, and AIDSpirit first began making an impact internationally.
WE BEGAN TO GROW
The Chairman of AIDSpirit USA at the time, Terry Fettig traveled to Uganda in 2007 to meet with the children we were sponsoring and to discuss opportunities with the Tender Mercies Foundation. Tender Mercies was renting a home in the Kayunga District of Uganda to house children orphaned by HIV/AIDS. Upon his return, Terry requested AIDSpirit to begin raising funds for a water well for the community he had visited, as well as additional sponsors for the children he had met on his travels.
OUR FIRST HOME
The demand for a larger space because of the number of students being sponsored led members of AIDSpirit who visited Uganda in 2009 to lobby friends, family, and others to build a new Tender Mercies home suitable for our children. We continue to sponsor the education of 65 students, 28 of whom live at Tender Mercies, where we provide them a safe home environment, in addition to their education.
OUR NEW HOME
In addition to our sponsorship program, we attempt to annually drill a fresh water well in communities of need, serving thousands of individuals who had previously been without this basic need. We continue to conduct sickle cell anemia clinics, in addition to the eye glass clinics, and several other outreach programs.
Our biggest accomplishment in 2015 was the building of a security fence around our Tender Mercies home with the help of the Montana District Key Clubs. In building this fence, we are able to provide a safe environment for our children, in which they can continue to grow and thrive in their educational endeavors.
AIDSpirit USA is currently in the beginning stages of a self-sustainment program at Tender Mercies, which would allow the home to be self-sufficient. We have just recently planted 25,000 pineapples to jumpstart the first of many sustainment programs to come. It is our hope that in continuing to provide resources for Tender Mercies, we will be able to spread our outreach to other areas of need in Uganda.
OUR FAMILY IS STILL GROWING
As we continue to grow as AIDSpirit USA, we look for future opportunities to make an impact in communities of Uganda. We are committed to raising funds to build a new primary and secondary school in the Kayunga District to provide the best possible education for our children, as well as to expand on our existing work drilling wells, and continuing to provide a home for children in need of our love and support. With your help, we will continue to make these goals a reality.