SHORT TUBERCULOSIS PORTRAIT

Hamred Adepoju


Luckily,
I was able to go back to my mother’s

Hamred (23) is single. This we can tell immediately by the room he rents in a slum in Ibadan: stacks of CDs beside his mattress, Nigerian dance music blaring from the stereo and several brightly-coloured shirts on the coat hangers. But until recently Hamred was living back at this mother's, because he was no longer able to look after himself. Tuberculosis had cut him down. And it wasn't just any old tuberculosis.

Damien Foundation - 25 years in Negeria - Tuberculosis “I caught the disease four years ago and was given treatment. But I quickly felt better and stopped the medication early. What happened? A year later I had the multi-drug resistant form of tuberculosis. It sapped all my energy; I couldn't work, or walk, let alone look after myself. Luckily, my mother looked after me.”

For eight full months I was given an injection and tablets every day by a healthcare worker: a volunteer. Then I had a year of tablets every day. The volunteer monitored my health for months and I slowly got better. Since then I have found myself another job. I am a bus driver and earn 40 dollars a month. A month's intensive treatment for resistant tuberculosis costs 3,500 dollars. If it weren't for Damien Foundation I wouldn't be here now.”

Damien Foundation - 25 years in Negeria - Tuberculosis portraits

Damien Foundation - 25 years in Negeria - Tuberculosis portraits

TEXTS: Wendy Huyghe
PHOTOS: Tim Dirven @T.Dirven for Damien Foundation

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