Circular letter on World AIDS Day,
1st December 2009

Today is World AIDS Day.

Many important people from all walks of life will issue copious statements, comments, demands and verbal or electronic affirmations of sympathy, but just a few will put their words into action by looking after the very AIDS patients they are concerned about.
Therefore we rather won’t post eloquent declarations of intent and resolutions, but we rather provide the care ourselves where AIDS patients need our help.

Mandeni was once styled the AIDS capital of the world.
Hopefully this “rank” has been challenged by others meanwhile.
Nevertheless it is a sad fact, that there are numerous HIV-positive patients, who would need treatment, but they do not plug up the courage to have themselves tested for HIV infection because they are shy and afraid of stigma or in fear of discrimination.
Thus their long-term success through proper antiretroviral treatment will be delayed.
Therefore we made a motivational campaign today at local factories.
We just hope that many will take on the challenge and ask for an HIV test now.

Please visit our World-AIDS-Day page on the Internet which informs you in detail about our holistic and comprehensive approach to the AIDS pandemic and our various programmes to fight AIDS.
You are surely aware that we offer all our services – including AIDS treatment – free of charge, because our patients are usually so poor that they could never afford to pay for their treatment themselves.
All our work depends on donations.
Because our patient load has increased significantly and because all our vacancies have been filled, it becomes increasingly difficult to finance our work and we have to grab every chance for fund-raising.
Thus we want to ask you quite openly to consider whether you could help us in any way.
Be it through donations or by talking to your parish, Rotary-, Lions-, Round Table- or Golf-Club, CWL, sports club, association, company or whoever, of they could not contribute to raise these urgently needed funds.
Every coin, banknote and cheque helps, no matter how small or big!
Kindly visit which suggests various ways to help us and to view different ways of sending us donations.
Please forgive me if I annoy you again with my begging.
Please do believe me that I am quite embarrassed to do this, but I assume that you will understand my position.
I cannot deny my responsibility when help is needed for people whose life depends on it.
I am most and wholeheartedly grateful to each and everybody who supported my missionary and charity work in South Africa during the last 23 years through their prayers and sacrifice, donations and supporting membership and I ask you to continue your support.

Wishing you a blessed Advent I remain

Yours sincerely

Father Gérard T. Lagleder O.S.B.
P O Box 440
Mandeni 4490
South Africa
Phone +27 82 4924043
Fax +27 86 6938940

The Brotherhood of Blessed Gérard is a Public Benefit Organisation (PBO No. 18/11/13/2769), an Association of the Roman Catholic Church and the Relief Organisation of the Order of Malta in South Africa.