late and beloved Holy Father, Pope John Paul II, dedicated his Lenten
Message of 2004 to the world's most needy children.
In a press conference presenting the Message on January 29th of
that year, the Pontifical Council Cor Unum emphasized in a
particular way within the realm of public opinion the great concern of
the Holy Father for the most grave and growing problem of HIV/AIDS,
which claims children among its primary innocent victims.
This is especially true not only in Africa, but also in other
parts of the world, manifested in babies who are born HIV positive or
those who are orphaned at a very early age because their parents succumb
to the disease. At this
same time, Cor Unum presented a project for public consideration,
known as Nyumbani Village for child-victims of AIDS in Nairobi (Kenya),
run by the Italo-American Jesuit Father Angelo D'Agostino, who is a
medical doctor. Along with
the donations sent by private donors for these tiny victims of AIDS, the
Region of Lazio (Italy) provided a substantial contribution
(€500,000), while the Government of Vatican City State issued a
stamp on the same theme, raising an additional €500,000.
The project was begun in the first months of 2005 and the
Nyumbani Village was inaugurated on April 4th.