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Hopes and visions

As the final question in the interviews, the narrators were often asked about their hopes for the future or visions for change. The answers are pragmatic as well as inspiring.

They range from finding a cure for AIDS, to prevention of HIV transmission, to access to essential treatments and support for all. Some also call for greater inclusion of and respect for people affected by HIV and AIDS, and the end to cultures of silence, stigma and discrimination.

Let us stand up and use what we have

I advise everyone to talk about HIV/AIDS, and go for the test in order to know their status. HIV is there. People should wake up and seek help. It doesn’t help to stay indoors because you are HIV positive. TAC has fought for us – now we are having treatment in some of our areas. People, let us stand up and use
what we have.

Nofamu (female), member of TAC, South Africa

Remaining HIV negative

I do encourage those who are still negative to remain negative. The positive must speak out. I told them to be free or else they are going to die. I used to tell them to look at me – how many years now, and I am still living and doing everything like the other people.

Female, member of TAC, South Africa

HIV is here in our community

I want the community to know, and to realise, that HIV is not there outside, overseas or in another town but it’s here in our community. I can work through you with the media, and with other organisations to make that message clearer – for the community to get the message and to get the facts.

Gerald, member of TAC, South Africa

Helping others

I want to work for my community, helping other people so that they do not get sick like me.

Female, member of TAC, South Africa


Hopes and visions is a key theme of the Speaking freely on HIV oral testimony project.


South Africa | Gerald: sharing the burden

South Africa | Jo-Ann: joining the struggle

South Africa | John: a loving family

South Africa | Nomafu: encouraging others

South Africa | Patrick: beauty in equality

South Africa | Sylvia: anger to acceptance

Namibia | CJ: fulfilling our potential

Namibia | Karolina: bringing me peace

Namibia | Jeni: leaving stigma behind

Namibia | Maria: information is essential

Key themes

Introduction to the project

Hopes and visions

Challenging the government

Working with the media

Support through community

Why join… or start a movement?

Living with HIV

Gender dimensions

Identity, culture and context