Rosemary hbc

Rosemary Mani is one of Vumilia’s most active and successful Home Based Caregivers, a leading member of the ‘Health Angels” motorcycle team, who spends her time visiting sick and bedridden patients, bringing medicine, food counselling, hope. She is round and smiley, kindhearted and hardworking, admired and loved by many in the community, still a little shy and embarrassed when the spotlight is shone on her, a very wonderful person.

Rosemary first came to our attention in 2008. Widow of a polygamous man, her co-wives had also died. She was HIV positive herself and trying to look after 9 children – on a 1/5th acre plot of land!! She had earned some pennies doing agricultural labour – weeding, clearing – for neighbouring farmers, but was too weak and emaciated to continue such work, and losing all hope fast.

Rose and others visited Rosemary, put her on ARVs, counselled her, spent time with her, ensured she ate well, encouraged her. Rosemary responded, was uplifted, became active again, got into some small business ventures – drying and selling fish, rearing sheep, renting some land to cultivate. This and that.

She was so appreciative of Vumilia she insisted on becoming a volunteer. She was trained by Riders for Health how to ride and maintain a motorbike, given a riding suit, gloves and a helmet, and joined the HBC team in 2009. As living proof of how a HIV widow can overcome so many hardships and become a role model educator, caregiver and mother, Rosemary is particularly honoured and respected in the community, and her work is especially effective. We are so proud and pleased to have her working with us.