Do you do just HIV/AIDS care? Yes. We work with patients who have HIV/AIDS and the illnesses associated with and medical conditions resulting from HIV/AIDS.
Do you partner with other organizations in the field? Yes, we partner with nonprofit organizations which are local to the countries in which we work. Our commitment is to work alongside with and to strengthen existing in-country systems, so that if a LoveAIDS worker needs to leave the field, it does not cause a system collapse.
Do you hire and train local staff? Not currently, though this is something we are considering for the future.
How do you decide to open a project? As a young organization, we began prayerfully where doors were opened to us and where there was an existing need for medical workers. As we grow and add workers, we will continue to seek prayerfully where there is a need and where doors are opened for us to serve.
What are the limitations to LoveAIDS expanding their programs?
Finding experienced and committed management/staff/volunteers
The logistics of serving within each country
What is the process of a project being opened?
Identify an existing need within a country for medical workers.
Establish needed interpersonal and organizational relationships.
Secure the needed finances for the project within that country.
Resolve the logistics.
Secure experienced and committed management/staff/volunteers.
What is your general reception in the countries where you work? Due to the need for medical workers to work with AIDS patients, the reception is generally positive.
What is your relationship to the governments of the countries where you work? We do not currently have a formal relationship with the county we have been working in but have been working in as volunteers in close communication with and under the licensure of in-country workers. This is a next step that we are pursuing and that comes with time.
What measures does LoveAIDS take to ensure the safety of its workers? LoveAIDS does not take its workers into any politically volatile situation. Each worksite and residential situation is investigated prior to each trip, so that workers are living and working in areas deemed to be safe by the local communities and by the country and by the U.S. Embassy within that country.
Each international worker is expected to make wise decisions for themselves, as they would be expected to do so for themselves working internationally in any situation. We require that every worker complete our International Worker Orientation before leaving for the field. Also, LoveAIDS workers are evaluated and selected for ability to work on a team and follow organization guidelines and leadership to minimize any safety risks in the field country. At any time, if an international worker shows an inability to work within a team or follow the guidance of the team leader or organization guidelines, they are removed immediately from the field.
Where are most of your programs? As a young organization, we began our work focusing on the socioeconomically disadvantaged HIV/AIDS patients in inland Costa Rica. As we grow, we have targets for other countries, in Latin America as well as on other continents.
Where are the current HIV/AIDS hotspots? The current HIV/AIDS hotspots, where there is the highest number of HIV/AIDS patients, are East and Southern Africa, with Lesotho and Swaziland being hit the hardest; and then West and Central Africa being the second hardest hit regions in the world.
Why is LoveAIDS not currently working in the HIV/AIDS hotspots then? Many resource limited countries which are not labeled as “hotspots” have a shortage of HIV/AIDS medical workers. The primary qualifications for countries where LoveAIDS works are “resource-limited” and “having a shortage of medical workers.” LoveAIDS is a young organization that was birthed because there were no other Christian medical organizations that focused on meeting this need. We work to fill that need, one worker at a time. Our goal is, as we grow, to send qualified medical workers to those hotspots as well as many other areas not labeled "hotspots" but in need.
What kind of medical trips do you specialize in? LoveAIDS does three-week Christmas-time trips, twelve-week summer-time trips, and long-term work residing in the countries we partner with.