Meet Xolelwa Joni who beat XDR-TB
2 November 2015
My name is Xolelwa Joni and I have survived extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB). I am now a Donald Woods Foundation Peer Educator and ambassador in the fight against TB.
I was born on the 8th of August 1983 in East London. I am a twin and I attended Inyathi Primary school and Mzokhanyo High school. I also studied Information Technology at Accord Business Studies College.
In June 2012 I was diagnosed with Multi Drug Resistant TB (MDR-TB) after which I was admitted to Fort Grey TB Hospital in East London, South Africa a month later. I started my MDR treatment but a week later I was diagnosed with extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB).
I took the XDR treatment for two years, completing my treatment in January 2013. I have continued with my reviews for about two years now.
In 2013 I became a Donald Woods Foundation Peer Educator in which I play a role as an ambassador as I have lived through the very difficult MDR/XDR treatment.
“The journey of talking treatment was not an easy one – there was a lot of difficulty and pain throughout the process. I made it through with the support of my family, the Donald Woods Foundation, my friends, the nurses at Fort Grey TB Hospital and my nearest clinic in Braelyn in East London.” – Xolelwa Joni
My struggles with XDR-TB have changed my life, making me aware of the importance of health issues and the fight against TB.
I am pleased to report that currently I am now studying to be a nurse at Lilitha Nursing College, attached to Butterworth Hospital in the Eastern Cape, South Africa.