South African HIV charity Love

South African HIV charity Love Is All We Need gathers friends in Brighton

Love is All We Need, a UK based charity that supports children affected by the HIV/AIDs pandemic in South Africa, held its fifth annual Friend Raiser in Brighton on Saturday.

South African HIV charity Love

DSC04519 (Medium)The evening was warm in Brighton and the welcome was even warmer atc. A UK based charity that supports children affected by the HIV/AIDs pandemic in South Africa, Love is All We Need was started in 2006 by a small, passionate band of Londoners wanting to lend a helping hand to South Africa’s poorest communities. They currently support the Hope Centre, in Pietermaritzburg. The Hope Centre not only cares for 36 orphans, but also 600 child-led households in Sweetwaters, a nearby community where over 100 people die every week from AIDS.

A grim statistic certainly, but the message spread by the trustees and volunteers working for Love is All We Need was far from negative. Instead, after drinks were had and everyone was seated for the presentation, Lisa, Bev and Carol retold stories that, while often tragic to begin with, could surely not fail to warm even the iciest of hearts.

DSC04525 (Medium)We heard the tale of HIV positive Seth and his brother, who were buried alive by their mother, herself mentally affected by AIDS. Luckily, through what’s known as the ‘bush telegraph’, word filtered back to Gail and Zanelle of the Hope Centre, and the brothers were saved. Although Seth suffers from a speech impediment due to oxygen deprivation, he loves singing, which not only entertains everyone at the centre, but also has the added benefit of helping his speech.

Seth is only one of hundreds of children helped by the Hope Centre every day.  The Centre hands out fourteen tonnes of dry food a month, runs clinics and beadwork projects and educates HIV positive children too ill to cope with normal school. They couldn’t do much of this without the support of Love is All We Need and the kind donations from the public. In the future, these donations will be put towards building bigger premises with more educational and medical facilities, as well as providing more carers and support for child led households.

For more information, or to find out how you can help, please visit

Story and photos by Hailey Jean Flee.

See a gallery of photos from the event here