Ruth: Uganda

James Pursey

My name is Ruth. I am 39 years old and am the mother of eight children. I am a member of the Family Support Group supported by the STAR-SW project at Ibanda Hospital in south-western Uganda.

I found out I was HIV-positive after my seventh child, Sharon, fell ill when she was six years old. When I took her to the hospital, she was tested for HIV and we were informed that like me, she is HIV-positive too.

Sharon is feeling much better now. She is on medication and I bring her to hospital for regular checkups.

The Foundation’s Family Support Group has taught me the importance of adhering to treatment. I will continue to ensure that she takes her medication correctly. And I believe that she will live a happy, meaningful life.

When I was pregnant with my eighth baby, Ezra, I was put on medication to prevent the transmission of the virus to the baby. Ezra is now two years old, and being tested for HIV today. Although I am anxious to know his results, I am hopeful because he is strong and looks healthy.

Twenty minutes later… Ruth emerged from the counseling room, with a smile on her face.

“Ezra is Negative! I feel so happy my baby is well! I will have him tested again to confirm these negative results in the next couple of months.”