Cameron with actress Courteney Cox at the 2008 "A Time For Heroes" Carnival. (Photo: EGPAF)
People think that HIV is a manageable disease, but I'm here to say that it is not. When I was two years old, I received a blood transfusion that infected me with HIV. Five years later, my family and I learned of my HIV-positive status.
We tried many different types of medicines, but nothing worked. For the next 17 years my health deteriorated and I struggled to survive.
It wasn’t until I was 24 years old that I finally found a treatment that kept the disease manageable. Despite this progress, I still struggle with HIV. My medications work now, but in three months, my body could be come resistant to the drugs, and I will need to find another treatment option. It’s a frustrating process, but something everyone living with HIV experiences.
Today, I have dedicated my life to helping others who are facing the same problems that I once did. I started my own organization called the Cameron Siemers Foundation for Hope, which has given my life a purpose. I also speak as an EGPAF Ambassador, advocating for research to establish better treatment options for children with HIV and to ultimately find a cure for the virus.
As I continue to wait for a cure, I think about the other children and young adults in the United States, and around the world, that are waiting with me.
No matter what, I always stay hopefully. I believe we will one day come up with a cure. Until then, I will continue my work, educating people about HIV, and fighting for individuals like me, and advocating for continued research and support for those affected by pediatric AIDS.
Cameron stands up at a White House Town Hall event in Los Angeles, California to urge the White House to make women and children a priority in the National HIV/AIDS Strategy.