BACKGROUND: AIDS propagated in Central China during the 80’s and 90’s through the selling of blood in small Chinese villages. Many of the poor sell their blood to supplement their income. To enable taking more blood from the villagers, health officials would mix all of the blood, extract the platelets, then re-inject blood back into the donors. The procedure infected thousands with HIV/AIDS. Ignorance in these areas is very high and the victims, whether child or adult, are ostracized, beaten, and cast out of the community.
MAKING A DIFFERENCE! Redlands native Meghan Cochran-Yu is being Dangerously Unselfish. The daughter of Dr. Leisure Yu (founding member of the California Heart & Surgical Hospital) and University of Redlands senior spent four months in China working with the Fuyang AIDS Orphan Salvation (AOS). AOS is a non-governmental organization (NGO) which assists AIDS orphans and their families, providing them with financial, nutritional, medical and social support.
Through UofR’s versatile Johnston program, Meghan’s education will include developing a public awareness campaign for AOS. She is on a mission to quantify the extent of the AIDS crisis in Central China, assess the Chinese government’s action on the matter, and assist the children who have been orphaned by AIDS and/or suffer from AIDS. Her plan includes addressing colleges, high schools, churches, and other public venues to bring awareness to this epidemic as well as raising funds for AOS with the aid of Trinity Evangelical Free Church in Redlands. Meghan returned to China on May 25th to teach in rural provinces that lack basic understanding of this devastating disease.