Developing a successful GFATM regional proposal to strengthen community responses to HIV among MSM and TG in South Asia

Published: July 22, 2010

Developing a successful GFATM regional proposal to strengthen community responses to HIV among MSM and TG in South Asia

E. Settle1, S. Khan2, K. Mulji3, A. Boner4

1UN Development Programme, Bangkok, Thailand, 2Naz Foundation International, Lucknow, India, 3Naz Foundation International, London, United Kingdom, 4PSI Nepal, Kathmandu, Nepal

Issues: Community-led proposals to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria have a very poor record of approval, and funds are often dominated by governments and large international organizations. In addition, there is a strong preference for single-country proposals, though many advocacy and capacity issues can be more effectively addressed though a regional approach. Finally, MSM in South Asia face an urgent need of HIV information and prevention services that has to date not been comprehensively addressed by existing interventions in national programmes.
Description: A multi-country proposal that had been rejected during Round 7 was revised and strengthened through the efforts of Naz Foundation International (NFI) in partnership with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Populations Services International (PSI). Over the formulation process, country level partners and stakeholders were consulted to ensure synergies between the regional proposal and national responses. The proposal aims to 1) improve the delivery of HIV related services; 2) improve the policy environment; and 3) improve strategic knowledge on MSM and TG in seven South Asian countries [India, Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Bhutan and Afghanistan]. The US $47 million regional proposal was submitted and approved for Round 9.
Lessons Learned:

   1. Successful regional proposals require sustained and intense advocacy, planning and leveraging comparative advantages of partners and stakeholders (and in the case of Global Fund proposals, CCM members) remained informed and supportive of the proposal.
   2. Community-led proposals are possible, but are at an inherent disadvantage of often not having access to information, data and other resources. It is therefore necessary to maintain strong partnerships with government, donors and UN agencies.
   3. Funding is essential for the process of drafting such a proposal – consider it an investment.

Next steps: The partners will work with national partners to successfully implement the proposal and strengthen national responses.

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