© Living Positive Kenya - 2017 

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Carol Wanjiku

Carol used to think that only prostitutes and people living on the street got HIV and AIDS; but marrying an unfaithful husband proved her wrong. After they separated, Carol became very sick. That was in 2013. Thankfully in four short years, she has come a long way. It was a difficult journey, though.

Upon telling her mother of her HIV status, she was disowned and called a prostitute. But with two children, no money, and nowhere else to go, she had no choice but to stay there. Her family did not make it easy for her. Her children were not even allowed to touch food that she had touched.

Eventually, though, her family chased her away, and she was left with nowhere to go.

Miraculously, Carol was saved by a Good Samaritan. Carol cried to this random woman on the street and explained her ordeal. Not only did the woman offer to shelter her in a small iron sheet house for free, she also gave her free food and actively looked for work for Carol.

Carol later moved in with her aunt so that she could live close enough to a hospital where she could receive regular treatment.

One day a social worker went to visit her aunt. The social worker heard Carol's story and passed it on to Mom at LPK. "I was so happy because Mary treated me with her heart," says Carol. Mom enrolled her in WEEP and gave her and her children free housing in a farm. 

Carol's life was slowly coming together. She was surrounded by loving peers, she was getting stronger, she was becoming independent, and her stigma was disappearing. Even her mother, after realizing that Carol in fact wasn't dying, embraced her daughter once more.

"I started to feel everything was going to be okay when I stepped into LPK," she says. "I found a light. I saw my stigma lower, and I had more self-esteem. I knew that I'd survive long and watch my children grow."

"To me, LPK is my second home. It makes me feel good. It makes me feel that I am not going to die tomorrow. LPK has given me a new life. It gives me hope. "