Case study: A chance to enjoy being a child again
"I am so grateful for your support. I am what I am because of you. Where will my life be without your support!" Blenda, Uganda
Twelve-year-old Blenda lost her mum to AIDS when she was just four years old. Shortly after she fell sick herself, and after her grandmother took her to Lukaya Kitovu health centre she discovered that she was HIV positive.
Blenda started attending a peer support group workshop called Yezu atwagala, meaning 'Jesus loves us', and has since learned to cope with her condition. Her group meet every Saturday to make crafts, have fun and enjoy their childhood, and also to support each other during more difficult times.
In a society where HIV drugs are sometimes viewed with suspicion, having a support network of friends means children like Blenda are encouraged to keep taking the drugs that can extend their lives and make them feel well again.