Self-help groups for people living with HIV in Nepal provide valuable peer support to their members.
They encourage one another to stick to treatment, and support each other with hospital visits or when they fall sick. Monthly meetings are a safe place, where they feel they can be themselves, and do not need to hide their HIV status.
Groups receive training in managing micro-savings and loans, entrepreneurship and how to become a sustainable community organisation. Our partner helps each group to work with local government, including accessing funding.
Here’s what some members have to say:
‘I used to feel I was going to die soon but since being in the group my desire to live has increased, and I believe I will live’.
‘It feels very different when I’m with the group, like I’m in a different world. It is very pleasant being together.’
‘I feel good in the group, to be able to share my feelings and learn from others.’
‘My family did not treat me well. Members of the group went to my family and convinced them I was not infectious and I would live. My family now treat me better.’
‘The group gave me a small loan, a person like me with HIV cannot get loans.’
‘In an emergency, when we fall sick and go to hospital, we support each other – financially and spiritually.’