GCWA: Nawel Lahouel joins the GCWA advisory group
My name is Nawel. I am a 38 years old positive woman from Algeria. I am the president of El Hayet NGO, first NGO of People living with HIV (PLHIV) in Algeria. My story with HIV started when I was just 19. I contracted the virus, lost my daughter and husband who both passed away. In the middle of the social and cultural barriers that were condemning me I decided to draw a line of hope, courage and action for myself and for PLHIV in my country and my region to overcome together all obstacles and shout PLWHIV rights for universal access.
I first leaded advocacy at the highest level for access to treatment, then contributed in resources mobilization and fight against stigma and discrimination, denouncing all practices that stigmatize people living with HIV. I also supported through El Hayet the launch of NGOs of PLHIV in other countries of the MENA region and was among the organization committee of the first meeting of PLHIV in the region that took place in Algeria. I currently coordinate projects on national level aiming to ensure socioeconomic reinsertion for women and girls living and affected with HIV as well as projects for the elimination of transmission of HIV from mothers to children. I belong to the MENA Rosa network of women living with HIV and member of the board of the Regional Arab Network Against Aids.
Statement: For me, my selection to the GCWA translates the engagement to fulfill human rights and stand by women to empower them no matter where they are. It is the vital step to undertake to ensure women leadership and full participation of the most vulnerable groups for one goal.
I believe, a generation under zero stigmas is possible and it is together that we will make it happen.