We come as a family to make a connection, person to person, arm in arm and along the way to share our lives. It is our honor to improve conditions and create opportunities for changing the cycle of poverty and disease in South Africa.
In the fall of 2000, Rev. James Cassidy and Pat Murphy Minneapolis, MN with members of a small delegation made their first trip to the townships of Cape Town, South Africa to meet Rev. Spiwo Xapile from the JL Zwane Memorial Centre, a Presbyterian community. As the group witnessed the disparity in a country still recovering from apartheid while dealing with the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Arm In Arm In Africa came to be and a partnership began. Across the miles from Minnesota to help our brothers and sisters in South Africa, partnering with the JL Zwane Centre we joined arm in arm.
In the ensuing years, the programs and assistance provided by AIAIA have blossomed in the country that continues to be identified as the epicenter of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Poverty, unemployment, malnutrition, , education challenges, inadequate housing and transportation all contribute to a culture with many challenges in life. While we are not called to attend to all of the challenges of our South African friends, we are there for them â€œbit by bitâ€ to reach out and help where we can, arm in arm.
Our work is dedicated to education, healthcare/hospice and the distribution of food in impoverished villages. Our programs expand each year to include new areas of need with our message of hope being the first gift that we hold in common with our friends in South Africa
Where We Work
What We Do
Poverty and malnutrition are a result of widespread unemployment in the Eastern Cape where people struggle to sufficiently feed their families. AIAIA supports two communities, Malungeni and Itipini with quarterly food distributions of rice, mealy meal, samp, flour, beans and chicken. The food is sufficient to meet the needs of a family for a month and enables them to spend their limited resources on shelter, clothing and education. In the village of Malungeni, the food distribution which began in 2003 with assistance to 15 families has grown to 160 families. The Itipini community of 200, who formerly lived on a garbage dump, has been relocated to a similarly distressed area where unemployment, crime, lack of sanitation, water and insufficient food are daily challenges. Currently, 38 Itipini families receive AIAIA food distributions. All food is purchased in South Africa which benefits the local economy.
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Posted: 7 months ago
Posted: 8 months ago