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Add your voice: Save a child from pediatric AIDS

Did you know one fact could save an infant from a lifetime of stigma and fear? It’s as simple as this: we can prevent the transmission of pediatric AIDS from mother to child nearly 100 percent of the time.

No more children need to die from pediatric AIDS, and it’s up to us to make sure the facts and the resources are out there to stop the epidemic.

Add your voice to join the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation in the fight.

For Sabina, a 35-year-old embroider and clothmaker from Tanzania, finding out she was HIV-positive felt like the end of the world. She was five months pregnant with her son when a regular prenatal checkup revealed her status. She felt her whole world crumble around her.

Because of the deep stigma surrounding HIV, she was scared – for her child, for her family, and for her future. She hid her medicine in the maize flour where no one would find it and fought with the weight of her secret.

It was a conversation with her sister, who works as a nurse in Mwanza, and later her husband, that got Sabina to see the hope for the future. Her status was not a death sentence, her husband and her family stood beside her, and her son could have the future she had hoped for.

Today, Sabina and her husband take their HIV medicines together, and are caring for their happy and healthy baby boy, Betton Patrick and his siblings. Betton is HIV-negative thanks to the quick testing, and treatment that Sabina was able to receive.

It’s her deepest joy that her family is whole: "We are grateful that we have not passed this virus to any of our children. It is the best gift we can ever give them."

Today, give the mothers and children facing HIV the same hope that Sabina and her family received. Add your support and your voice, and say that you’re in this fight.

I stand with mothers like Sabina for the health and futures of their newborns. No mother should have to fear passing along her HIV-positive status.

Pediatric AIDS is nearly 100 percent preventable and I will not bend to the stigma, fear, or lack of access to knowledge and treatment that keep children from receiving the care they need.

The Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation started this petition with a single signature, and now has 5,185 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.