I am Thandiwe and I grew up in a small village in Zambia, where HIV/AIDS is common. The effects of this disease have hit my village hard. A lot of people died, including some of my teachers at school. I was 8 years old when our school had to close down because there weren’t enough teachers anymore. So I couldn’t go to school any longer, just like so many other children in my village. Education, a basic right for every child, is so important and we were not able to access it!
Therefore, I organized a march to another school. 60 students participated in it and all were admitted to this school! Ever since, I haven’t stopped fighting for the right to education and for the right to be informed on HIV/AIDS. To ensure that as many children as possible know what the dangers of HIV and AIDS are, I wrote a book for children; The Chicken with AIDS. It’s about a chicken who, because of her different relationships, gets infected with HIV and passes the virus on to a duck. My message is that everbody has to protect himself or herself against the virus.
Together we move the world
KidsRights supports me, as a changemaker, in my fight for a world without HIV/AIDS and for a world where every child can go to school. At my old school, we built a library called Thandiwe’s Library where children can develop their talents in different ways.
I believe that change starts with us, the children and young people of this world. It is important to make yourself heard, for you to speak out, to be strong and to never stop! We, together, as changemakers, can change the world.