Living with vitiligo – Chozi

16 September 2021
Julie Nasuju faced discrimination and rejection for being different.
Vitiligo, chozi, jane nasuju

Vitiligo is a disease that affects the skin. It occurs when the pigment-producing cells die or stop producing the skin colour resulting in lighter blotches of skin. This condition can affect any part of the body and in most cases, it's hereditary.

When Julie Nasuju was born, her skin was okay. She started showing signs of vitiligo when she was in kindergarten. Her mother, who is a pastor, noticed the condition and prayed for her. She also assured her child that she would be okay.

However, the older Julie grew, the condition worsened. It became increasingly difficult for her to accept it. When she was in high school, she remembers being teased by her peers for being different. They thought that vitiligo is contagious, so they stayed away from her.

Her problems didn’t stop there. After she completed high school, she fell pregnant, and her boyfriend dumped her. Her mother took her in and she fell pregnant again and had to move in with the father of her second child. Julie suffered abuse at the hands of her boyfriend who later moved out of the house.

Watch her full story here

Tables turned for Julie when she met a photographer to was interested in taking pictures of her. Her pictures were later exhibited in a gallery which helped to raise awareness about vitiligo. Julie is now an acting chairman of the Vitiligo Society of Kenya, a DJ and a model.


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