Report on the Presidential
Mission on Children
Orphaned by AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa:
Findings and Plan of Action
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On December 1, 1998, World AIDS Day, President Clinton highlighted the growing global tragedy of children orphaned by AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa. At that time, he directed Sandra Thurman, Director of the Office of National AIDS Policy, to lead a fact-finding mission to the region and to report back to him with recommendations for productive action.
From March 27 through April 5, Director Thurman led a Presidential Mission to Zambia, Uganda, and South Africa. Director Thurman was accompanied by Representatives Jackson-Lee, Kilpatrick, and Lee, and senior staff from the offices of Senators Hatch, Helms, and Kennedy, and Representative Pelosi. Also joining the Mission was a group of community leaders from outside of government including Mayor David Dinkins, Bishop Felton May, and William Harris. [Attachment A: Trip Manifest]
The goals of the trip were to:
I believe that if we could reach to the heart of people, we would always do better in dealing with problems, for our mind always conjures a million excuses. We cannot restore to [these children] all they have lost, but we can give them a future - a foster family, enough food to eat, medical care, a chance to make the most of their lives by helping them to stay in school.
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