Gender, youth and communities at the center of the HIV response and the AIES 2022 Conference

Gender, youth and communities at the center of the HIV response and the AIES 2022 Conference

The time is for action, financial commitments and a concerted response. To a few weeks of the 7th Replenishment Conference of the Global Fund, the Partnership celebrating this year s20 years old, is sounding the alarm in the fight against HIV, tuberculosis and malaria.

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Montreal – Ouagadougou – Dakar, Tuesday August 2, 2022Over 9,500 people attended given meet, in person in Montreal, Canada, from July 29 to August 2, 2022 to participate and attend the 24thInternational Conference on HIV/AIDS, the first global platform for the response to the disease.

Communities, people living with HIV/AIDS, political decision-makers, media, activists and civil society organisations, are unanimous, progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS has stalled. Globally, the number of infections stabilized at 1.5 million in 2021, the same number as in 2020. Whose fault is it? The COVID-19 pandemic? Certainly, but even before hitting all continents, the world had already strayed from the trajectory of the targets for the fight against HIV, tuberculosis and malaria.

Progress in reducing the number of people newly infected with HIV is slowing. Between 2020 and 2021, the world has seen the smallest annual decline in new HIV infections since 2016. In 2021, women and girls accounted for the majority of new infections in sub-Saharan Africa and more than 3 in 4 new infections among young people concern adolescent girls and young women “, said Winnie ByanyimaExecutive Director of UNAIDS.

It is urgent to take action. For this purpose, and shortly after the opening ceremony of the HIV Conference, the Global Fund organized a session satelliteJuly 29, 2022 entitled “Fighting for what matters: maximizing health equity, gender equality and human rights in the fight against HIV”.

Opened by Peter Sands, Director executive of the Global Fund, this symposium reviewed the results obtained, after 20 years of scaling up the Fund’s programs and interventions, but also the remaining and emerging challenges. Two panels, moderated by Maelle Ba, Head of Strategic Communication at Speak Up Africa, highlighted the partnerships but also the importance of community leadership.

Farida Tiemtore, 23-year-old young activist, President of Heroines of Faso and recipient of the Voice Fund Essentialsalso joined to discussions on the first panel “20 years of impact, what worked and why? », on line of his native Burkina: Faced with the urgency of eradicating the HIV/Sidathe Essential Voices of Burkina fight for what matters by raising awareness, informing, strengthening advocacy for better prevention and response for young girls and women facing to illness and I am convinced that we will succeed in I’elImine by 2030 “.

Launched in 2021 and with 35 women-led community-based organizations in Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal, the initiative Voice Essentials, implemented by Speak Up Africa in partnership with the Global Fund and the CHANEL Foundation, aims to support and stimulate the impact of health policies and programs by ensuring the commitment of women and girls, in all their diversity, in decision-making spaces.

This initiative is in line with the Global Fund’s new strategy “Fighting pandemics and building a healthier and more equitable world”, which puts people and communities at the heart of the fight against HIV, tuberculosis and malaria. During the second panel “What are our next steps and how can we ensure we achieve the Sustainable Development Goals ? “.

Grace Ngulube, Ffounder of Youth Health Connect 360 and HERVOICE Fund Ambassador for Malawi, reaffirmed the importance of a fully funded Global Fund The Global Fund invites us all to fight for what matters. I matter, you matterz, young women matter. Now is the time to prove it. Financing the Global Fund is showing that our lives have value. I hope that with meaningful funding, we can do more to address gender inequalities, uphold the rights of adolescent girls and young women, and ensure that girls are free from HIV.. »

In 2021, the increase in the number of people on HIV treatment was the lowest in more than a decade. Although three-quarters of all HIV-positive people have access to antiretroviral treatment, about 10 million others do not, and only half of HIV-positive children have access to life-saving drugs. In the same year, the AIDS pandemic was responsible for an average of one death per minute, or 650,000 AIDS deaths despite the existence of effective treatment for HIV and tools to prevent, detect and treat infections. opportunists.

About Peter SandsFarida Tiemtore and Grace Ngulubethe Global Fund has also brought together the opinions, expertise and comments of His excellence Stephanie Seydoux, Ambassador for Global Health of France, Dr. Joe PhaahlaMinister of Health of South Africa, Winnie ByanyimaUNAIDS Executive Director, Joshua TobaccoGeneral Manager of Health and Nutrition at Business Globales of Canada, Dr. AngeliAshrekarDeputy Senior Program Coordinator GUSA HIV lobal, Javier Hourcade Bellocq of the Communities Delegation to the Global Fund Board and finally Lindsay GlasscoPresidente and CEO of Plan International Canada.

2022 is a crucial year and marks a turning point in the fight against HIV, tuberculosis and malaria. While communities have shown remarkable resilience and changed their programs to ensure that people living with HIV and key populations are not left behind, their commitment and determination has clearly shown how Sustained and increased support from the Global Fund is needed.

The Global Fund has also shown remarkable flexibility, and acted quickly to help countries strengthen their health systems, access inputs emergency, respond to COVID-19 and adjust their HIV, TB and malaria programs. The future is uncertain but the goal is clear: the Global Fund must be fully funded, with at least $18 billion for the period 2023-2025, “If it’s not us, then who will it be?” If not now, then when? “, thus concluded Peter Sands, Director executive of the Global Fund.

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