'This is my last life.'

A supportive community in rural Malaysia that gives people with HIV and recovering addicts a place to heal.

Set in the rural town of Batu Arang, Malaysia, Positive Living Community (PLC) offers a place of refuge for those shunned and rejected by society.

The majority of residents are HIV patients, and people recovering from drug or alcohol addiction. 

For many, it is a place away from stigma and discrimination, and where residents find shelter, treatment, and social support.

It is also where they hope for a new life.

Many have tried restarting their lives several times over.

In the words of 28 year-old Rakesh, a former alcohol addict, “This is my last life.” And he’s trying to live it for the best.

The journey towards recovery has its ups and downs for sure, as people battle with past addictions, regrets, and hurts, whilst trying to live life anew. 

It is where they take stock of life’s journey to rebuild relationships, and find a way forward.

With sensitivities in mind, pseudonyms have been used in this story.

Positive Living Community runs four shelter homes, providing housing for over 70 residents. They welcome volunteers and donations to help ease monthly expenses for utility bills, rent, and transportation for daily hospital visits.      

Photographer & Writer  :   Grace Baey