“There remains a lack of clarity of the various roles and responsibilities different stakeholders will play in key components of the new funding model (NFM). At both global and country levels, there is no guidance on who will play what roles and who makes decisions.”
These assertions were contained in a “Communities Statement” released by the Communities Delegation on the Global Fund Board on 28 January following a consultation organised by the delegation on 25–26 January in Amsterdam. The Global Network of People Living with HIV helped to organise the consultation which was attended by 31 community leaders and activists from national, regional and international networks of communities living with and affected by the three diseases. According to the delegation, the Communities Statement “puts together collective 'asks' of the Global Fund in the processes of the NFM.”
“The roles of key Global Fund structures, such as the Technical Review Panel, are not adequately defined,” the statement said. “The Global Fund must clarify these roles at the beginning of the transition phase, and ensure that they are evaluated throughout the pilot process.”
According to the statement, community knowledge and understanding of the NFM is “extremely limited. There have been few strategic and resourced efforts to strengthen community knowledge on changes in Global Fund processes.”
The statement said that the Global Fund needs to ensure that communities are given adequate support to enable them to influence all stages of the process, “including a sustained and ongoing country dialogue.”
“Countries where [effective] community dialogue platforms cannot be established should not be allowed to participate in the transition phase” or the full roll-out of the NFM, the statement said.
“Community engagement is critical to the effective implementation of the NFM,” the statement said. “It ensures that resources and support reach the people most affected by the diseases and that human rights are not abrogated in proposed interventions.”
The statement said that before the NFM is fully implemented, the Global Fund “must integrate guidance on policy and programming that address human rights” and the needs of key populations.
In conclusion, the statement said that the Global Fund should develop mechanisms “to raise awareness, improve understanding of, and increase engagement of, communities prior to and during the transition to the NFM.”
The Communities Statement is available on the Aidspan website here.