South Africa is in mourning following the death of television personality and activist Angie Diale. The renowned HIV activist, who famously fought to destigmatise HIV and AIDS, died on Thursday afternoon. She was 57-years-old.
The celebrated HIV activist and health and relationship counsellor, affectionately known as Mam’ Angie, died from pneumonia following a short illness.
While Mam’ Angie is best known for hosting Mzansi Magic’s Please Step In for seven seasons, her enduring legacy will be about how she fought to destigmatise HIV and AIDS.
Mam’ Angie faced a lot of stigma and discrimination after being diagnosed with HIV shortly after the birth of her son at the turn of the century. However, instead of cowering or feeling sorry for herself, the late presenter faced the stigma head-on and used it to spur her fight against HIV and AIDS discrimination.
In an interview with TimesLive, Angie Diale said,
“I had to face the stigma and discrimination at work after disclosing my status, but instead of feeling sorry for myself, I decided to go on a journey to educate people about HIV and Aids.”
Mam’ Angie, a qualified nurse, worked tirelessly to eradicate the stigma attached to HIV and AIDS by educating people across townships. She did this by setting up HIV wellness clinics in various townships around Soweto and in Mpumalanga.
She also hosted numerous radio and television programmes where she engaged people on issues relating to HIV. In addition to this, Mam’ Angie also advised the government, media, businesses and NGOs on HIV and Aids-related issues.
“I do radio and television programmes where I engage various people on the issue, especially the youth.”
“I advise the government, media, businesses and NGOs on HIV and Aids-related issues ranging from advocacy, prevention, care, support, treatment, capacity-building and mentoring to employment assistance programmes.”
Mam’ Angie Diale also established an organisation that looked after for HIV-positive and abused young mothers and their children. The organisation provided shelter for the women and children while working on long-term solutions for them through skills development.
“The aim is to keep them there until we find a permanent home for them.”
Mam’ Angie’s enduring legacy will be remembered by generations to come.