"I didn't know if I was going to get a house or if I was going to be thrown out."
When I was diagnosed, I was living in shared housing. I was diagnosed with TB and then down the line, I found I had HIV. It was really difficult for me to understand the Social Services system because I was new to everything, I was new to the NHS medical treatment and I was new to social services... I fell ill, and went into hospital.
One of the social workers came to see me, and did an assessment. They said that when I was due to come out of hospital, I was going to go to Mildmay because I couldn't go home and I was not able to look after myself, and they couldn't send any people to assess me while I was living in the shared housing. So I went to Mildmay for three weeks. Then after I left Mildmay, the social worker and some of the nurses continued to look after me by coming to my house.
My neighbours asked "why are all those people coming in?" I couldn't say "I've got TB and HIV, and it's treatment, that's why all these people are coming in". So I felt I had to disclose to my landlord! Fortunately, my landlord understood. His brother in law is HIV positive. He was really understanding and he gave me a fridge in my room in case I needed to keep medication in there, and managed to do a lot of things for me.
He assisted me writing letters to Social Services. He knew that they were supposed to be paying for me. I stayed there in that shared housing for about another 8 months before they gave me somewhere to live, and they paid for it. It was really difficult at that time because I didn't know if I was going to get a house or if I was going to be thrown out. I was still learning about being HIV positive so all these things were going round my head.