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Nkosi Johnson
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    (February 4, 1989-June 1, 2001)
    Born in Johannesburg, South Africa
    Birth name was Xolani Nkosi
    AIDS activist
    Made a powerful impact on the public perception on the AIDS/HIV pandemic in South Africa
    Adopted by an Afrikaner mother Gail Johnson, founder of The Nkosi Johnson AIDS Foundation
    Gained public attention when refused entry to a primary school in Johannesburg because of his HIV positive status (1997)
    Although everyone was saddened by his story, he received medical treatment when there were thousands of other children in poverty dying of AIDS without access to proper care.
    He died too young.
    He was born with HIV into extreme poverty.
    He never knew his father and his mother was HIV positive, unable to take care of him and died when he was eight.
    He fought for the rights of children suffering from HIV/AIDS.
    He was refused entry into school because of his disease.
    His campaigning led to a new law being issued that all schools accept children with HIV.
    The South African government was in denial of the AIDS pandemic at the time; Nkosi helped bring the issue to the world's attention.
    In his speech at the international AIDS conference in Durban, he said, ‘please help people with AIDS, support them, love them, and care for them.'
    He was posthumously honored as a prize laureate by the World's Children's Prize for the Rights of the Child (2002) and the International Children's Peace Prize (2005).
    His foster mother established the Nikosi Haven, a refuge in Johannesburg for AIDS mothers and their children.
    Nelson Mandela referred to him as an 'icon for the struggle of life.'
    He ranked 5th on television’s greatest South Africans (2004).
    He continued his campaign even as his condition began deteriorating.

Credit: ash5667

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