Reigning Miss South Africa, Tamaryn Green has officially launched her life-changing initiative, titled #BreakTheStigma.
At the launch held at The Maslow in Sandton City, Johannesburg on Thursday, the 24-year-old medicine student shared her story on how she beat Tuberculosis.
The Western Cape beauty was diagnosed with TB in 2015 when she was doing her third year at varsity. And with the fear of being isolated, she didn’t tell anyone about it.
Due to the illness, she had to stay out of school for a month and couldn’t write her final examinations.
Tamaryn Green speaking at the #BreakTheStigma launch. Picture: Nhlanhla Phillips.
“I was officially diagnosed by an infectious specialist in June 2015, after a number of tests and I started treatment immediately. I made the decision not to tell any of my extended family and friends for fear of being treated differently and being isolated as this often happens with TB patients.
“In my second month of treatment, I could no longer handle the discomfort of sitting through lectures. I then spoke to my lecturer who immediately got me help from a specialist doctor at Groote Schuur. The university was very supportive throughout the process and offered counselling.
"My treatment continued until I developed hepatitis secondary to the medication. This was when it got really bad. I felt ill every day for a month and I deferred my exams and moved back home,” says Green.
Discussions on how to #breakthestigma around TB. Picture: Nhlanhla Phillips.
Through her #breakthestigma campaign, Green aims at raising awareness around TB, which will kick off in South Africa, before branching out to Africa and the rest of the world.
She also hopes that the campaign educates people and help eliminate the stigma surrounding the disease.