AVAC's "Strategic Initiatives" bring partners together for concrete campaigns on urgent issues.
AVAC's Strategic Initiatives complement and build on the work of our Advocacy Fellows and many other global partners. They are strategic and focused, often linking advocates across countries and disciplines in order to effect lasting change. Some Strategic Initiatives are ongoing; others are time-limited. To get involved or suggest a new initiative please contact us.
Resources for Influencing PEPFAR Country Operating Plans 2015
PEPFAR is the US government-funded AIDS program that delivers or supports HIV/AIDS services in a range of countries. Annual plans called Country Operational Plans (COPs) govern activities and set targets, and civil society input is essential. Below are resources for more background and with information on how to get involved.
- Communications - Civil society letter to PEPFAR advocating for expanded engagement and reply from Ambassador Birx
- PEPFAR Country Operational Plans: Using activism to accelerate access to high impact treatment and prevention - Developed by Health GAP, an overview of dates for, goals of and scope for civil society engagement with the development of PEPFAR Country Operating Plans
- PEPFAR COPs Engagement "Cheat Sheet" - Civil society can and should be meeting with PEPFAR teams at country level to review the previous year's performance and the next year's targets. This is list of some questions to bring to these meetings. The answers you get are not final—raising these and other issues can help change programming and priorities!
- Influencing PEPFAR COPs: An Advocate's Guide - A basic schema for how PEPFAR relates to other national processes and how civil society can get involved. Some details have changed, but the basic process is accurately described.
AVAC works with vibrant country coalitions in Malawi, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe and elsewhere to influence PEPFAR Country Operating Plans, applications to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and National Strategic Plans—inter-related processes that directly impact the implementation of proven strategies including VMMC, ART for HIV positive individuals, PrEP for HIV negative individuals, male and female condoms and condom compatible lubricants, harm reduction programs and much more. We have developed training materials, case studies and peer support mechanisms to help share lessons and build effective advocacy coalitions in country. Specific ongoing and recent activities include:
- Influencing UNAIDS draft Prevention Targets—read our feedback and letter to UNAIDS on November 2014 draft targets here
- Tracking the drafting of PEPFAR Country Operating Plans for 2015
To learn more and get involved, please contact us.
Hormonal contraception and HIV: Amplifying women's voices
AVAC and partners are engaged in a range of activities focused on addressing issues regarding hormonal contraceptives and risk of HIV. There is evidence that some methods, particularly injectable hormonal contraceptives might increase women's risk of HIV. Some studies show this association; others do not. AVAC, ATHENA Network, the International Coalition of Women Living with HIV East Africa and a range of other partners are following the issue and developing advocacy strategies focused on expanding women's access to a range of options (method mix) and to ensuring that research to definitively answer this question is fully-funded and developed with input from civil society. To learn more and get involved, please contact us.
Human rights, LGBT equality and HIV prevention advocacy: Bridging gaps, building common agendas
Biomedical HIV prevention strategies have the greatest impact in the context of health systems, communities and countries that respect the rights and dignity of all people. AVAC and our partners are focused on building a common agenda for effective HIV prevention and treatment and human rights for LGBT individuals, sex workers, and other key populations that are under-served and over-burdened by the epidemic. To learn more and get involved, please contact us. Specific recent and ongoing activities include:
- Joint advocacy at global and national levels to amplify cross-cutting issues in PEPFAR Country Operating Plans, GFATM applications, UNAIDS targets, research agendas—and more.
- Solidarity actions with and in support of colleagues in countries with legislation criminalizing homosexuality, HIV transmission, sex work and more. This includes a sign-on letter delivered to US corporations who participated in the US-African Leaders summit, and ongoing collaborations to track the public health impact of these bills.
- Development of materials that focus on funding and advocacy opportunities for key populations focused on biomedical HIV prevention.