UNICEF-supported programmes help families living with HIV in Angola

The bright red train carriage looks slightly out of place beside the square concrete architecture of Luanda’s Bernardino Paediatric Hospital, but the children love it. Inside the carriage, a group of toddlers are happily playing with building blocks under the supervision of social worker Frangueira Bernado António.

"We have an odd situation here, where children ask their mothers to bring them to the hospital because it's fun," said Mr. António. Although it began as a distraction for the children awaiting consultations and treatment at the hospital, the train car has become a useful therapeutic tool in itself – providing much-needed recreation, in particular, for the children at Bernardino being treated for HIV.

Angola is home to an estimated 190,000 people living with the virus, including 110,000 women. Alongside local activists and social workers such as Mr. António, UNICEF is working to support mothers here and prevent the spread of HIV from women to their babies.

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