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E-Pao! Drug Awareness Education - Aim at the Sun, success is yours

Aim at the Sun, success is yours

S. Joy *



Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got a hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it over to future generations,”
- George Bernard Shaw.

Noori, the only child born in a Muslim family at Ramanathapuram had experienced the joys of childhood till she attained the age of 13. Bang came the blow for the family, Noori was in the process of becoming a trans-gender.

Noori was thrown out in the open world with none to care for. She had to run away from the stigma that was attached to her gender. From Ramanathapuram, this little child reached Chennai and thought of settling down.

As ill luck would have it she was found to be HIV positive in 1987. For the past 19 years she struggled as a HIV patient too. These ups and downs in life did not deter her aim to lead a decent life and the result was – Noori started a group called South India Positive Network at Peravallur near Chennai in 2001.

Now the group has 1074 members. Every third Saturday, the people living with HIV gather to share their experiences. Today Noori is the President of the network.

All the staff members employed at this centre are HIV positive and they are supported by the Tamil Nadu State AIDS project since 2002. Through the strenuous efforts of her group they have started empowering those living with HIV at various levels.

The National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) is the implementing agency for the NACP. Currently NACO and the SACS support about 900 NGOs for targeted interventions aimed at reaching the so-called high-risk groups.

The Department of Health and Family Welfare have integrated HIV/AIDS in IEC material preparation and also in the reproductive Health programme. To encourage the participation of the NGO at the grassroots level, the procedure for funding NGOs has been decentralized to enable State AIDS Cells to fund projects in designing and implementing HIV related programmes and policies.

Training is conducted at two levels: intermediate and grassroots. This Centre for South Indian Positive Network has also been involved in counselling, offering medical care for HIV infected couple and children every week.

In addition, the HIV positive persons are also given projects like toy making, nutrition powder preparation, herbal powder preparation etc. Those who are deployed in this labour have to complete their work on time.

For example (The minimum time required for making 100 kg nutrition powder takes 6-8 days). A day’s labour costs Rs. 80/- for one person and that support is raised through donations.

The products produced are marketed in government Exhibitions. Her ambition is that the HIV positive people should be able to support themselves in order to live a decent life to the end.

Her success in moving forward had not only inspired the transgender people but also those who are HIV positive. Noori’s message to the whole world is that ‘Do not give up’.


* S. Joy, from PIB, wrote this article for The Sangai Express . This article was webcasted on 12th June 2007.


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