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2009.12.31

David Beckham visits ‘Mothers2Mothers’ centre in Cape Town

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© Per-Anders Pettersson for UNICEF via Getty Images
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador David Beckham with Tamara, who is living with HIV, and her son Sesiphi, 3, who was born free from HIV due to treatment provided by the UNICEF-supported 'Mothers2Mothers' centre.

 

CAPE TOWN, South Africa, 9 December 2009 – UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador David Beckham was in South Africa this week to highlight the global progress that has been made on preventing Mother-to-Child Transmission (PMTC) of HIV.

During his busy stay, the football star visited a UNICEF-supported programme in a clinic in Cape Town's Khayelitsha Township, where he met and talked to pregnant young women and new mothers who are living with HIV.

Mothers supporting each other
The UNICEF-supported ‘Mothers2Mothers’ (M2M) programme provides vital education that helps pregnant women and new mothers prevent HIV transmission to their babies. It also gives them the knowledge they need to improve their own health and that of their children.

Mr. Beckham was introduced to the work of the programme by Dr. Mitch Besser, the founder of M2M, who told him about the ground-breaking care and support that the clinic's patients receive.

He also met Tamara, 25, a mother living with HIV, who received treatment at the centre and now supports other young women in similar circumstances. Tamara started her treatment at the clinic when she was five months pregnant. Thanks to the testing, counselling and medication she received there, her son Sesiphi, now three, was born free from HIV.

Tamara said it was important for men to get more involved in supporting their pregnant wives, noting that too few husbands and male partners join their wives at the clinic. “She told me that more men need to sup

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