HIV:Reaching out to rural communities
HIV is on the decline in Kenya thanks to the nurses at the Kimana Health Centre.
Lydia Kimani, from Kimana, is a community health worker at the centre where she visits each Tuesday.
She tested HIV positive in November 2004 after a wound on her knee failed to heal.
Kimani now gives health talks to those who have also been diagnosed with HIV and helps people learn to accept having the disease.
She started working as a volunteer, but now she gets paid 200 kenyan shillings each week.
The health worker feels being HIV positive is still a stigma and she wants to make sure that people accept themselves once they realised that they have the disease.
She is part of the Kimana Fighting HIV group which consists of 25 people, three of which aren’t HIV positive.
The group goes into villages to teach them about HIV and how to stop contracting the disease, giving talks about condoms and how to use them.
They go to church every Sunday but while Kimani’s church accepts the work she does some communities do not
The Maasai people think HIV is a curse and Catholics do not believe in using contraception.
The group also meets every Friday and engages in various activities. They make beads out of waste paper to sell them. They also perform dramas and kits to spread awareness about HIV and AIDS.
People are informed about female circumcision and how it can spread HIV.
In towns, female circumcision is no longer practised, but in villages, it is still an issue.
Lydia is really positive that the work she does will significantly decline HIV in the future.
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