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"IT'S NOT ONLY THE POOR THAT'S DYING OF HIV/AIDS!"

says Zenebech Worku

ID12Zenebech

Zenebech Worku

She is now thirty-two-years old. She was born and grew up in Awassa. She's the third child for her parents. She attended her primary education in Tabor Elementary and Junior High School.

Gender :

Female

Country :

Ethiopia

Residence Region :

Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples' Regional States

Association:

Tilla Association of Women Living with HIV

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"When I was in school, I enjoyed performing in dramas. Life in school was full of happiness. Our father was a soldier. We used to live on his little income. I was not in accord with my elder sister. "I flee to Matahara with a man who came to Awassa on work. He was my first. Our life together was not peaceful. Because our love life was dying from time to time, I came back to Awassa. My family didn't reject me. They accepted me. Then I started living with another man. We had a good life together." Zenebech's new and good life didn't last for long. She heard a rumor that he had another girl friend. "When I heard that the woman who has an affair with my husband was sick, I went to the hospital to see who she was. I was shocked by what I have seen. The things that I'd seen on her made me suspicious, so 'I told him that it'd be better if we had a blood test. He refused. But I got tested. "After I knew the result of my test, he got tested because of the death of the girl. Now he condemns himself saying, 'I'm the one who put you in this situation.' Currently he's in a critical condition. We quitted bring together." Zenebech is now working as a civil servant. She is also a member of Tilla Association. She has exposed herself and is teaching the society. "You have to know well about the person with whom you've decided to live. The partners should have a blood test before marriage. After marriage, living faithfully is the main point. By looking at a temporary problem or an instant satisfaction you should not plunge into a permanent problem. You've to control yourself." Regarding attitudinal change she has many incidents. "One time when was coming from Addis, a man who was going to Moyale was sitting beside me. We reached Shashemene chatting. Because he, was planning to spend the night there, he asked me to sleep with him. I told him that I live in Awassa and tried to take leave of him. But he refused to let me go. I told him that I'm a member of Tilla and showed him my ID. He was not surprised. 'This is your new way of getting money. You sell your conscience for Money,' he said and got off carrying his bag. He didn't'! Believe me." Zenebech believes that many things should be changed though the awareness of the society is increasing each day. "Most of the people who have exposed and organized themselves to proclaim 'Let generation be saved, let it stop on us!' are from lower class. This made the problem look like a problem of the lower class. If a radical and considerable attitude and behavioral change should be achieved in the society, the people who are suffering from HIV but kept quiet should also expose themselves and teach."

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