Rosa was very ill. The application for emergency aid by Untenu stated: she hid her HIV status and therefore did not take HIV medication. Two weeks later She passed away.
Stigma can kill
Stigma can be in many forms: stigma associated with having HIV, stigma because you deviate from the prevailing norm in a country and stigma at work. Rosa was a transwoman who had HIV but few knew she was sick.
From her home town of Phnom Penh, she moved to Battambang. She worked as a make-up artist at weddings, but she also made money as a sex worker outside the wedding season.
She did not take any medication for fear that someone would find out that she had HIV. When her partner found out that she was HIV positive, he abandoned her.
Exhausted and critically ill
When Untenu received the request to provide emergency aid at the end of November, Rosa was already very ill. And today we learned of her passing. Untenu will contribute to the costs of her funeral.
We help where we can
The funeral will be funded with the help of donations. To give you an idea: for €125 ($150 / £112) we pay hospital costs and food aid. For €82.50 ($100 / £75) a sober but dignified funeral will be arranged.