I began studying Psychology at the University of the Western Cape in 2003. I have been working at the university’s HIV/AIDS Programme since 2002 as a Health Promoter. I talk about my status and do one-to-one supportive counselling to those who test positive for HIV. I have been trained by Dramaide in advocacy, positive living, gender and communication, presentation and facilitation skills.
I have taken part in a television series called “Beat It” (Siyanqoba) whereby a group of HIV positive men and women discuss issues like positive living, nutrition and Tuberculosis and HIV. The series was showing on SABC 1 (Yamampela) since 2 September 2004. I do one-to-one supportive counseling to those who test positive for HIV. I organize and run support groups, raise awareness about HIV/AIDS, encourage people to test for HIV, and advice people about treatment and promote positive living. The university runs a support group for staff. The group meets once to twice a week and is totally confidential. It is facilitated and arranged by HIV positive students.
Cell: 073 227 7320
My husband died seven months into our marriage. It was sixteen years ago when we were not so well informed about AIDS. My husband’s death had been a mystery to everyone...until I tested positive several months later. I kept the diagnosis a secret and was filled with shame, anger and bitterness towards the world, God and my late husband. Isolated, afraid and discouraged, I struggled to understand why it had happened to me. Sick, depressed, terrified of being ostracised, sad that I would never have a child and feeling guilty for keeping a secret, I knew that I wouldn’t get better until I told the truth. I finally confided in my parents. They were devastated but supportive. They told my siblings, who took my parents for counselling. Two years later, I felt confident enough to tell my community.
Many in my community were supportive, saying it was time for someone to break the silence. Others showed open disgust. That was when I made it my life’s purpose to educate people about the disease. I am the first Muslim woman to disclose her status in my community, and I have since co-founded the organisation Positive Muslims. Today, I tell people newly diagnosed with HIV to confide in at least one person.
Tel: (021) 9592445