Today, with the help of lifesaving medication, an HIV-positive mother can give birth to a healthy HIV-free baby. And that medication can cost as little as 20 cents a day.
Check out the gallery below or read the full story.
Grace & Nantomba
In 2012, Grace and Nantomba’s mother, Mary, tested positive for HIV. At the time, Grace was three years old, and fearing for her child’s health, Mary got her tested. Luckily, Grace was found to be HIV–negative. Then with the help of her doctors, Mary began taking ARVs, which not only kept her alive and healthy, but enabled Nantomba to be born HIV–free.
In 2003, Blessing’s mom, Rabecca, tested positive for HIV, but at the time, antiretroviral medication, or ARVs, were not widely available or affordable within Zambia. Fortunately though, a year later, after hearing of a brand new clinic offering ARVs for free, she began receiving the lifesaving treatment. These pills not only kept her healthy, but ensured Blessing would be born HIV–free a few years later.
Connie & Lubona
Connie has been through more than one person ever should. Before she discovered she had HIV, Connie had three children. Unknowingly, while pregnant, the virus passed from her to them—all three later passing away. Despite this devastating loss, Connie has persevered, and with the help of ARVs, she has stayed healthy, counseled women just like her, and in 2012, gave birth to a beautiful HIV–free daughter, named Lubona.
Prince & Lister
In 2008, after being encouraged by a healthcare worker to get tested, Prince and Lister's mom learned the devastating news: she was HIV–positive. But, there was hope: both her kids were HIV–negative, and with the help of ARVs, she was able to stay healthy as well. Today, thanks to the support of their mother, this smart and funny duo are both in school and thriving.
Living a two–hour walk from the nearest hospital, Blessing’s mom learned of her positive status only after becoming pregnant. Two days later, she was on ARVs, which protected her daughter from contracting the virus. Today, at 7 years old, Blessing dreams of one day becoming a doctor.