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She was an orphan as both her parents, Pandari and Vimala Bai died because of HIV Aids when she was just a few months old. Priyanka was left with no support and all alone! There was no other family member except for her old grandfather, Dounde Rao. He had no other option but to take care of Priyanka but felt very helpless as he could not earn well. He was not able to work like earlier and his small income could not provide for their basic needs.

Priyanka_EYE-HIVOne day, Priyanka fell sick; she had very high temperature and was taken to a local government hospital. The medical investigations showed that this little girl was also affected by Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). This was a real big blow to Priyanka’s grandfather; he lost all hope and was heartbroken as he could not afford to provide any kind of treatment and care for his granddaughter.

The doctor at the hospital realized the difficult situation of Priyanka’s grandfather; he counseled him and told them about Operation Blessing India (OBI) and their partners who have a home where HIV affected children are cared for. Priyanka’s grandfather was very relieved when he heard that his granddaughter could also study in the school within the campus. Often the HIV affected children suffer the consequences of being HIV+ and are not allowed into the local schools to attend regular classes, but are only allowed to appear for their exams. So, Priyanka and the other children could study in the campus itself.

Priyanka_EYEHIV2Adding to Priyanka’s health problems of fever, cold, cough and other weaknesses, she complained about her poor vision, that she was unable to read her books. When she was taken to the medical camp, the doctor referred her for an eye check-up and her eyes were screened by the OBI ophthalmologist at the camp and the test showed, RE – 0.75 X 180 degree axis and LE – 1.00 X 180 degree axis. Priyanka was given a new pair of spectacles by the OBI team and the prescribed medicines for her recovery absolutely free. Her grandfather was so happy to see how Priyanka was taken care of and was very grateful for the support offered by OBI. As he enrolled her in the home, he said, “There is nobody who could provide this kind of all-round care and I’m happy God led me here as I’m confident that this is the right place for her.” Priyanka is quite happy as she settled down in her new environment; she said, “I am a class two student now, studying here at Rakshana Deepam and live here too. I’m happy living with all my friends here, it feels like I’m with my family.”

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