Climbing Kilimanjaro to conquer stigma

SOUTH AFRICA: Climbing Kilimanjaro to conquer stigma

JOHANNESBURG, 28 Sep 2005 (PLUSNEWS) - Paddy Nhlapo and Richard Yell conquered the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro on Tuesday, proving that living with HIV/AIDS "need not limit your horizons or defeat your dreams".

In their fight against preconceptions about living with HIV/AIDS, Nhlapo and Yell, accompanied by two others, set off last week to tackle Africa's highest peak.

Nhlapo, who works for Khomanani - South Africa's HIV, AIDS, STIs and TB campaign - undertook the climb to send a message to the public that "people living with HIV should never be defined and confined by their HIV status".

Yell is a writer and speaker on living with HIV/AIDS, who tries to live as rich a life as possible by not wasting energy on 'fighting' the virus.

The Department of Health said in a statement, "By reaching the summit, Paddy and Richard appear poised to enter the Guinness Book of Records as the first individuals openly living with AIDS to make the ascent."


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