“Casey House gave me life and hope, important things to me. Casey House took care of me better than my parents.”
A newcomer to Canada, Mar’s was diagnosed as HIV+ when treatment for tuberculosis was taking twice as long as it should, “I was fighting and not keeping up”.
She didn’t know she was living with HIV. She had only had one sexual partner, didn’t drink or smoke, and couldn’t believe her diagnosis. She spent six months living at Casey House, and offers her sincere appreciation, “Casey House gave me life and hope, important things to me. Casey House took care of me better than my parents.” Now, Mar wants to help other people live with HIV/AIDS. “I’m not giving up yet. I’m not giving up for any time,” she says.
Originally from Mynamar, Mar endeavours to overcome the language barrier, frequently pausing to confirm that she has successfully been understood, striving to make a resonant connection. This gives Mar an additional challenge when advocating for herself. “I don’t care what people think, my diagnosis is not my fault.”
HIV is only part of the story.