Michael Mwaura has four children and a wife, Winne Njambi. Several years ago, he was living in Mombasa, working as an administrative police officer. Around that time, he became aware of his HIV status and started deteriorating in health. He stopped working at the police station and tried his own small business selling used furniture. However, his health continued to decline and he decided to move to his family home near Limuru. Although he knew the Lord, he began to grow further from his faith as his condition worsened.
Around 2009, when he moved home, all he could do was manage some small home farming. He was struggling with work, his health, and stigma. His hope and energy were depleting until he heard about the CFA program at Assemblies of God Church in Kamirithu. In January 2010, he started the program. Over the nine months, his life was dramatically empowered.
He decided to get very involved with the program. He was so involved that the group elected him the leader of their group. To this day, many still call him “chairman”. He put the stigma behind him and now lives boldly, despite his status. He grew in his faith dramatically under the mentorship of Spiritual Counselor Paul. Now Michael loves sharing that faith with friends, family, and in the church. Through Medical Counseling with Eunice, he grew stronger, healthier and more active. So much so that he now manages several farming plots near his home, not to mention the livestock he raises and the crafts that he makes, all in his spare time!
If you were to ask someone in CARE for AIDS to give you one word to describe Michael, it would be “Empowerment”. He loves “paying it forward”, so to speak. He is constantly giving his time and energy to assist, encourage, and empower other clients who are now in the program. On many occasions, CFA has had Michael teach handcraft skills to other CFA centers around Nairobi. He has even been to Kisumu to help train CFA staff with new skills. Not only has he become an expert on the skills he was taught in the program, he has also created his own new products to sell, like beaded purses and small bags.
Over the last few weeks while Impact teams were visiting, Michael led several seminars on bead making. It was obvious that he loves what he does and always has a smile on his face. If you met him now, I doubt you could even tell all that he has been through. His story is one that I will always remember because he exemplifies empowerment for the CARE for AIDS program. That is why I am exited to share his story with you!