Defying the Odds
In the face of adversity, a father saved his son's life. Now, that son is giving back.
Share the proof:
A few months after finding out he was HIV positive, Kevin Koussai's weight dropped to 114 pounds. His story might have ended there but for his loving father. Kevin's father, Koffi, is a tribal chief in rural Cote d'Ivoire and deep social stigmas suggested that Chief Koffi might reject Kevin because of his status. But Chief Koffi bravely defied social norms. When Kevin approached him he said "You’re my son, and I’m not going to reject you because of an illness!’ It gave Kevin the strength he needed to to fight the virus. "My father accompanied me to all my appointments, he made sure that I took my medications, he paid for my prescriptions.” Kevin recalls.
Fifteen months later, Kevin was free of HIV-related infections and his weight had rebounded to 140 pounds. And now, six years since his diagnosis, Kevin is still healthy. He works full-time as a community HIV counselor at the local health center, helping other HIV-positive clients who are facing the same issues he faced a few years ago. Kevin's father remains one of his strongest supporters.