Nozuko

Nozuko relocated to the Western Cape in 1993 after leaving the Eastern Cape in order to make a home with her parents. She first found out about her HIV+ status in 2000 when she was pregnant with her second child. Nozuko was shocked when she found out about her HIV; she had barely walked through the door of the clinic to find out the results when they told her that she was positive. She was devastated because they did not tell her anything about the virus or offer any advice or counselling; she only recalls them saying to her, "you just have to wait until you die." But soon after finding out about her HIV status a friend recommended that she visit a Wola Nani support centre, which she first began attending in 2003. The support groups helped a lot and now Nozuko says, "I am not going to die, because of Wola Nani." The support groups and staff helped Nozuko find proper medical treatment and taught her the steps she could take to care for herself. Through her adherence to treatment during pregnancy, she gave birth to a third child born, May 2007 and HIV negative. Post birth she continued adherence to the education around mother to child prevention, by not breastfeeding her baby, but providing nutrition by bottle-feeding milk formula. Nozuko joined the income generation programme in 2003 to work on the light bulbs and any other crafts she could help out with. The income she earns from the crafts is vital, as she now has three children to support at home. She can often be seen in the main centre putting finishing touches on her crafts with her six month old daughter sleeping, securely tied to her back with a blanket.