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    Friday, 26 June 2020

    Family holds Auxillia Chimusoro’s 22nd memorial

    Auxilia Chimusoro.

    Tawanda Homba


    Masvingo – The family of the late Auxilia Chimusoro, the first Zimbabwean ever to disclose her HIV and Aids status held a memorial function for the pandemic’s heroine who succumbed to the ailment on June 19, 1998.

    This year’s memorial unlike many others that came before it was low key, involving just the immediate family because of the Covid-19 lockdown.

    The family headed by Auxilia’s daughter Kumbirai Mahaso and son Simbarashe led the memorial by laying flowers at her grave at Gokomere Mission near Masvingo on Friday June 19, 2020.

    In the past Chimusoro commemorations were heavily sponsored by USAid which supported national functions where citizens with outstanding achievements in the fight against HIV and Aids were given awards. Some such luminaries include the late musician and national hero Oliver Mtukudzi.

    Chimusoro is credited with demystifying and reducing stigma by going public on her HIV status in 1989. She tested positive in 1987.

    She went on to establish some member groups for people infected with HIV and Aids including Batanai HIV Support Group which has remained vibrant until today.

    The late woman who was a domestic worker is hailed in Zimbabwe as a heroine in the fight against HIV and Aids as her work created a lot of awareness not only in Zimbabwe but throughout the world.

    Kumbirai thanked Government, the donor community and the people of Zimbabwe for continuing to support the work started by her mother.

    “It was not easy for an ordinary woman to declare her HIV status at a time when HIV and Aids was taboo. Her decision stigmatised not just herself but the whole Chimusoro family including her children. However, looking back now everyone realise the positive impact she made in the fight against HIV and Aids by going public,” said Kumbirai.

    Batanai HIV and Aids Support Group today operates across five districts in Masvingo namely; Gutu, Bikita, Zaka, Chivi, Masvingo rural and urban.#MasvingoMirror#





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