Intersections: Gender and Sexuality in Asia and the Pacific
Issue 16, March 2008

Carol Jenkins

Renowned medical anthropologist who worked with sex workers, transgenders and drug users

Carol Jenkins passed away at 11 pm on 22nd January, 2008, in Bangkok, Thailand, of cancer. She was surrounded by friends from the four corners of the world, a full moon shone above, and sweet music was played for her by her two sons Aaron and Ryan.

Carol was born in 1945 in the USA, but she lived her life as a citizen of the world. Carol worked tirelessly for the health and human rights of marginalized people throughout the world, using her research skills to collect data and document the lives of people in order to improve their situations with evidence of what would benefit them. She often asked, 'Where's the data?'

Carol's recent work and publications included a study of life opportunities for transgenders in Thailand, a study of rape of sex workers in Cambodia, and HIV assessments in the Middle East and North Africa. She pioneered the use of respondent driven sampling with sex workers, in Fiji, Cambodia and elsewhere. But her first and greatest love was for her work and her many friends in Papua New Guinea, from the remote Hagahai to the street-dwellers of Port Moresby.

Carol's achievements were not limited to research. In 2004, she established the Travis Jenkins Memorial Award in memory of her husband. The Award is presented each year to a current or former injecting drug user who has made an outstanding contribution to reducing drug related harm.

Carol loved music, especially jazz, and played jazz guitar. Her home was a haven for musicians and colleagues from all over the world. Carol's door was open day and night to people dropping in to discuss HIV, health, research, and music.

She is survived by her two sons Aaron and Ryan Jenkins, and two grandchildren.

Carol was a giant in her field and will be sorely missed.

This obituary was first published on evidenceofcarol, 22 January 2008,, accessed 14 March 2008.
The image of Carol Jenkins was provided by Christine Stewart.


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