Amorn, 13 year old – Somying's son, on Kaletra for 4 months
Amorn is a lightly built, fragile looking boy. His emaciated face bears slight marks, remnants of the side effects he developed to his first line AIDS treatment. Amorn looks a bit too short and skinny for his age. You could easily feel there was something wrong with him and that’s precisely what drove him out of school for 7 years. "His teacher asked him about the marks on his arms, and when he said it was an allergy, the teacher said "you're lying you've got AIDS, don't get near me" remembers his mum "He simply refused to go back after that." But the shy teenager is back on the right track now. Thanks to Kaletra he's started gaining weight again, and hopes to catch up on all the education he's missed out on, and finally learn to read and write properly. Amorn became resistant to his first line treatment four months ago, just before his mother. They now both receive the drug for free through the national health scheme. "I really thought he wouldn't make it, but now he's much better," stresses his mother. Amorn's blue and white school uniform is paid for by a local charity and so is the rent of the house they live in. The family is too poor to afford a refrigerator and has to spend a third of their monthly household budget on ice to make sure Kaletra is kept at the necessary cool temperature. "Buying the ice is expensive," says Amorn who goes with his mother to the ice vendor every day. "It would be nice not to have to spend so much money on ice so we can buy other things."