Namwanje Shakirah, aka 'Keira', is a musician, film actor, counselor, peer educator, a survivor of sexual abuse and a young woman living with HIV who has dedicated her life fighting for the rights of girls.
Keira was just 8 years old when she was defiled by a family relative, and because of the threats to herself and others, she suffered in silence. It wasn't until the age of 13 when Keira disclosed her abuse to her family, and her mum took her to get a medical checkup and counseling. Soon after, she found out she had HIV. Eventually, through peer support and counseling, Keira was able to accept her HIV status and use her story as an inspiration for other victims to speak up.
When Keira joined PINA Uganda, she received additional counseling, realized she was not alone and was delighted to discover that she could put her knowledge and talents to good use. Shakirah was able to release the anger and no longer be bogged-down by self-pity, and continues to grow into a strong woman of steel. Keira aspires to continue inspiring young people, especially young women, and girls, be key in the fight to end HIV and AIDS, sexual violence, and to uplift the rights of girls in Uganda.
When T learned of and heard Keira's story and voice, he was extremely moved and touched. The pain and injustice that she has gone through is what T is wishing to rectify in our world. He is tremendously appreciative that Keira has decided to be a part of the Southern Time team.