Open my eyes
'My name’s Hope. I was told I had HIV when I was 12 and a half years old. To be honest I never knew what HIV was so I wasn’t fussed at first, until I got curious and started looking it all up; what HIV was, how it affected you, and how you could get it. It came up with Death, AIDS and that if you cut yourself your HIV would spread. Reading this kind of hit me bad, I started thinking I would die and that I was this infectious thing that had something wrong with me that wasn’t curable. That was until I met Abi at the hospital a few weeks later at my appointment. She spoke to me about a meeting with some other girls my age, that also had HIV and she explained what it was and how HIV actually worked. So I went to a meeting with these new people that were going through the same thing as me – it made me see that HIV isn't what everyone said it was, and that it's not as infectious as I thought. Then I got introduced to camp – meeting even more people with HIV. Camp really did open my eyes –telling me the truth about HIV and how you can’t die from it if you take your medication. Going through all this made me into a better person that wants to make a difference and make sure other children, teens and adults never go through the same thing as I did.'