JANET - ZIMBABWE

"I realised my life could change in 2011 when I [took part in] a leadership programme. This is when I realised there is a greater world out there, so many opportunities to embrace and take on."

As well as navigating the challenges of puberty - boys, friends, pimples, school - Janet has had to manage living with HIV at the same time.

Through the support of the Alliance, she has learnt about her sexual health and rights and now feels able to make the right decisions and choices: to avoid child marriage, to avoid teenage pregnancy, in her words ‘to avoid making choices that are wrong’.

This knowledge drove her to think about empowering other young girls to dream big and not just accept their current situation. Janet chose to undertake a leadership programme and she is now a Y+ Steering committee member of the Global Network of Young People Living with HIV and a mentor helping her community and beyond.

Donate now to support more adolescent girls like Janet to educate their peers on how to live a full and healthy life with HIV.

MARIAM - UGANDA

"I feel inspired that I’m able to reach people, some of who are in my situation. I’m able to listen... I have the experience, and this encourages them to go for services."

When she was 12, Mariam became pregnant by an older man and would later find out that she was also living with HIV. Blamed by those around her for what had happened, Mariam was subject to bullying.

Without antiretroviral treatment, Mariam became ill and was admitted to hospital. It was here that she began HIV treatment and was referred to a youth centre supported by the Alliance where she received support to take control of her health.

She was soon selected to become a peer-educator, talking to other young women about their health, their rights and HIV; encouraging them to access services and support.

Now a respected advocate, Mariam gives talks at conferences and training sessions. Any money she earns through her work, she puts towards her sewing business.

Donate and enable more peer educators like Mariam to protect young people from HIV by offering information and choices.

DAPHINE - UGANDA

"When I was first diagnosed it all scared me. I’ve really gained courage and strength to tell about my status... I really love myself, I really love the positiveness in me."

Daphine was at school when she was tested and diagnosed as HIV-positive. Then after losing her mum in 2013, she felt isolated and alone.

“I thought I’d never get married, I thought I’d never get anyone to love me, I thought HIV-positive people never give birth, and I thought HIV-positive people never become happy.

Then through a programme backed by the Alliance, Daphine received HIV treatment and care, counselling and information that have changed her outlook on life.

She went on to receive training in peer-to-peer counselling, condom distribution, data collection, and training on health, rights and HIV.

This has given her skills and confidence to help others and also look to her own future: she now knows she can have relationships, get married and start a family.

Donate now and inspire young women like Daphine to educate and empower their peers.