A Life Worth Living
For more than 15 years, Davide Joao Jeque worked in warehouse stock management in the Inhambane and Sofala provinces in Mozambique.
But in 2005, he learned he was HIV positive, and his life changed. People viewed him with fear and were not concerned about his welfare. He began looking for a new job.
He heard that IRD, working in partnership with the World Food Programme (WFP) of the United Nations, had expanded its food assistance program into the town of Maxixe. Under the program food is provided on a monthly basis to both HIV/AIDS sufferers and the widows and orphans of those who died of AIDS. Medical treatment and care is also provided to those in need.
Davide joined an IRD partner in Maxixe called Liwoningo. "It was important for me to belong to something that looked at the issue of HIV/AIDS in a positive light. Liwoningo allows me to work every day with people who, like me, want to continue living a normal, happy life with my family," explained Davide.
He noted that IRD and Liwoningo improve medical treatment to the greater Maxixe community through both the provision of home-based care and support services and education and awareness campaigns in local schools and churches.
As a warehouse manager in Maxixe, Davide oversees the distribution of food to program beneficiaries. Because he works with IRD, Davide is directly involved with all of IRD's partnering associations to determine what needs to be done. "Day to day, stigma still exists in our communities," he says. "Part of being a member of Liwoningo requires me to help guide others through this phase - not to jump over it - bur for the community to swim through together."
Davide's commitment toward assisting his own community and others is evident in the work he does for IRD and Liwoningo every day. His attitude towards the pandemic he battles first-hand is both admirable and inspiring. In the words of Davide, "Life is about maintaining a positive attitude and setting a good example for others."
He certainly has made his life worth living.