Ten million children in sub-Saharan Africa have lost both of their parents to AIDS. You read the statistics, but because the numbers are so huge, it doesnt register until you can personalize it and see the life of one child, says Kathy Burr, outreach director for Cherry Hills Community Church.
Burr wanted to bring the World Vision Experience: AIDS exhibit to her church because it is personal. The free interactive multimedia exhibit currently in the midst of an eighty-city tour lets visitors step into the lives of four children affected by AIDS by walking through a replica of an African village while listening to an audio track telling the stories of Kombo, Babirye, Emmanuel and Mathabo.
Its very authentic, because the things they have on display from the childrens lives are actually from that child, Burr explains. Its moving to see the daily struggles they have just to live. Two of them are HIV-positive and two are HIV-negative, and one little boy lives with his grandma because both his parents have died of AIDS. It provides hope at the end in that hes not out in the world on his own, like so many kids in Africa are right now.
We get so involved in our own lives, we dont think about whats happening on the other side of the world, and its not a huge sacrifice for us to be able to help, she adds.
The exhibit opens today and continues through July 15 at the church, 3900 Grace Boulevard in Highlands Ranch. For information, call 303-325-8427 or go to www.chcc.org or www.worldvisionexperience.org, where you can reserve a free ticket to minimize wait times.
July 6-15, 2008