Mary Fisher's Heroes
Members of Blind Faith, Inc. in Washington, D.C. 
    Blind Faith is a support group made up almost entirely of people who've served time and are HIV- positive. When I visited them at the HIV Community Coalition offices, what I found was people committed to living a better life by enabling others to do the same.
   Cochise Robertson-El, the founder and leader of Blind Faith, introduced me to the group. For more than an hour, we exchanged our life stories, one by one, going around the circle. At the end, Cochise closed the meeting by talking about what happens when we care for each other:

    "We came from prison, from drugs, from alcohol, from the streets. And we've become employable people. Willie Byrd, he's working. Kenny, a man who started his own business. Yvonne, once didn't have anything - couldn't have gotten out of DC - just came back from Albuquerque. Fred, a guy who came from San Quentin who found his way home by blind faith. There's a sister showing compassion and mercy for her sister, so she got involved.... We will not quit until we have stopped the spread of this virus in our community and in the prison setting. We are the underprivileged, the voice that's never been heard at the table where policies are being made..."
    "So long as we wake up - whether we've got sores and lesions on us, or we're losing weight, or whatever's happening - we hear the call, and the duty is to live. When we respond to that call and take on that duty, there's a power higher than us that's going to give us the energy and strength to succeed."

Caregiving isn't about helping us to die.
It's about enabling us to live one day at a time.
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