Africa’s ‘King of Condoms’

Kenya has the joint fourth largest HIV epidemic in the world, with 1.5 million Kenyans living with HIV. More than half of new infections are among those aged between 15 and 24, a massive jump from just 29% in 2013.

For adolescents living in Kenya, the burden of HIV and the threat of AIDS is still very real.

Stanley Ngara knew he had to do something truly innovative to break the taboo around sex to cut through the straight-laced, clinical manner adopted by many sexual health practitioners. Only through open, educational conversation, can these young people, who have been left highly vulnerable to HIV, empower themselves to practice safe sex and get tested for HIV.

When Stanley Ngara first started teaching young Kenyans about safer sex, he found many too embarrassed to listen to his message on how they could avoid catching HIV.

So how did he reach them? By taking on the alter ego of Africa’s ‘King of Condoms’.

Stanley helps run a workshop for young men at the headquarters of LVCT Health, a Kenyan NGO leading in HIV programming research and advocacy, that is supported by the Elton John AIDS Foundation. He teaches them how to use condoms and gives them self-testing kits.

“I say to them that what your teacher did not tell you, what your father did not tell you, what your uncle did not tell you, the King of Condoms will tell you,”” Stanley told reporters.

“In Africa people don’t talk about sex,” he explained. “They do not talk about condoms. There is so much stigma. But because of the way I now dress, people wonder who I am. They want to know more.”

Our #AIDSfree campaign is raising money to launch an educational programme targeted at young people in Kenya, and particularly young men who are among the least likely to get tested. Because for every one young man living with HIV in Kenya, there are also five young women or girls who are also infected.

What’s more, the UK government will be matching all donations, specifically to go towards this project. So your money goes even further.

£5 provides vital HIV testing information to those at risk

£20 will pay for a self-testing kit so those stigmatised can receive the help they need

£100 will ensure someone with a positive diagnosis is given the right treatment