Clara was 25 years old and working in Voluntary Testing and Counseling for HIV at a local hospital when she noticed she was having similar symptoms as her patients.
Even after she knew she had HIV, it was difficult to get a CD4 count. Clara traveled 400km to get the test: her CD4 count was 32 (from a healthy range of 500-1500) and she had progressed to AIDS.
With the support of The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, Clara has returned to full health—now her viral load is undetectable. Clara’s 12-year old daughter also has HIV, but is thriving. Prevention of mother-to-child transmission is now available to all pregnant women with HIV in Malawi—thanks to the Global Fund’s support, Clara’s second child was born HIV negative.
Clara now coordinates national activities for women living with HIV. She offers technical advice to organizations, encourages testing, combats stigma and discrimination and speaks publicly about HIV in Malawi.
Clara is clear: “I am the living example of what the Global Fund has achieved over the years.” Still, she warns that donors need to keep investing in the Global Fund because “there is an opportunity that we can end this epidemic.”
Clara is a a speaker for the Global Fund Advocates Network. The Global Fund is a 21st-century partnership organization designed to accelerate the end of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria as epidemics. Founded in 2002, the Global Fund is a partnership between governments, civil society, the private sector and people affected by the diseases. The Global Fund raises and invests nearly US$4 billion a year to support programs run by local experts in countries and communities most in need.The Global Fund is up for replenishment this year. That means the donors of the fund are deciding how much they are going to put into it for 2017 to 2019. Ground Media and their client wanted to capture success stories leading up to the replenishment meeting to explain to donors why the fund is important and what impact it has made over the last few years.