In 2021, PEPFAR supported 1 million people to newly enroll on antiretroviral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) to prevent HIV infection. Like all other PEPFAR supported countries, Lesotho is making significant progress collaborating with several implementing partners to enroll the populations that remain at risk on PrEP.
Sebongile Mokotso is a 24-year-old Mosotho woman, born and raised in Mapoteng in the Berea District. She is one of the outstanding young Basotho who consistently uses PrEP to keep herself safe from HIV infection. She currently lives at Ha Thetsane, where she studies Emergency Medical Care at the Institute for Development Management (IDM). Sebongile was married at 17 and was almost powerless in her relationship. Due to this abusive experience , she decided to start using Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) to minimize her chances of being infected with HIV.
Now, Sebongile visits schools across various communities to teach young girls about PrEP and its benefits in response to HIV. She is adamant that without PrEP, her risks for infection would have been very high. Most importantly, Sebongile credits her mother for being her pillar of strength and greatly appreciates all the efforts made to avail PrEP to those who need it most, especially young Basotho women, who are at the greatest risk of being infected with HIV.