Women4GlobalFund (W4GF) organised a webinar on October 20 2016 for W4GF advocates and partners to follow up on the operationalisation of the Global Fund Strategy (2017 – 2022) and how this will be impacted by the replenishment. 5 participants, including 1 Global Fund Secretariat staff attended the webinar, which covered the following:

  • Updates from the Global Fund Secretariat on the operationalising the Global Fund Strategy
  • Results from the replenishment linked to Strategy objective on gender equality and human rights
  • Questions and discussions from webinar participants
  • Next steps and actions

To view the slides presented by Heather Doyle, Senior Coordinator on gender from the Global Fund Secretariat click here

Presentation

  • Slide 2 – Strategic Objective (SO) 3 – Promoting and protecting human rights and gender equality is required to accelerate the end of the epidemicsthe work on gender equality includes two sub objectives:
    • Scale-up programs to support women and girls, including programs to advance sexual and reproductive health and rights; (specifically on HIV, TB co infections in Southern and Eastern Africa
    • Invest to reduce health inequities including gender- and age-related disparities (a is a subset of b and this is to address the specific disparities)
  • Gender equality will be integrated across the strategic framework. This includes in the work on human rights and key populations a strong gender analysis i.e. how harm reduction services are reaching women or the quality of analysis of female partners of men who have sex with men.
  • Under SO2 – A key performance indicator (KPI) is to assess a countries ability to report on sex and age desegregated data.
  • Slide 3 – Under SO3 the Global Fund Secretariat is identifying high level  drivers under the following areas:
    • Scale-up programs to support women and girls, including programs to advance sexual and reproductive health and rights;
    • Invest to reduce health inequities including gender- and age-related disparities;
    • Introduce and scale-up programs that remove human rights barriers to accessing HIV, TB and malaria services;
    • Integrate human rights considerations throughout the grant cycle & in policies & policy making processes;
    • Meaningful engagement of key and vulnerable populations and networks in Global Fund-related processes.
  • There will be a gender equality thematic report that expands on the one corporate KPI; and the one or two implementation KPIs on gender, which are insufficient to hold the Global Fund Secretariat accountable. It is not yet clear what will go into the report but this will be based on the assessment that was done on the Global Fund’s work of the current Gender Equality Strategy (GES). The Global Fund is integrating the GES into the new Strategy (with an action plan) instead of having a separate un resourced GES.
  • The Global Fund is working with the Goals modelling tool – refining this to include gender or human rights interventions. This will be improved and piloted next year. The Global Fund are convening with the Strive Consortium and the International Modelling Consortium at the beginning of December and then rolling this out with UNAIDS in countries. This will include trainings for Country Coordinating Mechanisms (CCMs) and the Global Fund Secretariat on gender and hosting training for adolescent girls and young women (AGYW) where there is disproportionate burden next year. They are also mobilising resources including having the right implementation partners in country dialogues and in funding requests – including organisations and networks who work beyond HIV such as women’s rights organisations and broader organisations that focus on SRHR. The Global Fund is trying to find mechanisms to coordinate these processes and bring the resources to those who need them especially given the tight timelines.
  • Slide 4 – Under SO3 a) – the following countries will be in focus; South Africa, Kenya, Mozambique, Tanzania (United Rep.); Uganda, Zambia; Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia, Swaziland, and Cameroon. The criterion is based on new infections; (UNAIDS data from 2016); incidence rate; and male to female ratio. A few other countries could be included such as Nigeria, DRC and Central Africa but the challenge is around reliability of data and a few existing implementation challenges, which is why the above list exists.
  • Slide 5 There are 15 high level KPIs. The KPI attached to SO3 a) to reduce gender and age disparities in health is HIV incidence in women aged 15-24. The challenge will be how the Global Fund will support countries to consistently report on this and have this data readily available.
  • Slide 6 Speaks to the types of programmes that the Global Fund would like to scale up on AGYW in high burden systems. The Global Fund want to see a comprehensive respond that aligns with the data and need focusing on specific groups. The Global Fund as a gap donor wants to ensure that they are fully, or in part, funding a package of interventions being offered by countries that really support AGYW so a good understanding of the funding landscape to reduce risk and keep girls on treatment is required.
  • Slide 7 Speaks to key programmes to reduce human rights barriers, reduce stigma and discrimination and increase access to justice – there is a big push around these programmes in 20 countries – there is a 6-country overlap with AGYW.

Discussion and Questions

  • The Global Fund Secretariat is currently calculating allocation for countries (the allocation methodology is already Board approved). The same formula applied to each country states how much money is accessible to each country. Among other qualitative factors the two largest considerations are the epidemiological burden and the GNI.
  • The Board set aside 800 million dollars for Strategic Initiatives. There are a number of initiatives that are decided by technical partners and put forward to the Board for approval. This includes US$40 million catalytic funding for human rights; and US$55 million catalytic funding for AGYW. These are initiatives that enhance investments and programmes. This will be based on population, epi burden; existing funding availability already budgeted with a focus on prevention (not treatment as they figures are not calculated by age group).
  • When are the priority areas (slide 6) shared or discussed with countries?

The Global Fund is not a normative setting body and is now designing information notes to communicate Global Fund properties to provide clarity on what the Global Fund can fund. In the field of AGYW it has been challenging as it is not clear what countries should be doing and with whom. When the allocation letter is sent in to countries mid December (based on each countries epi profile with linked expectations and priorities) this is the first time that the 13 priority countries hear about Global Fund priorities around AGYW, and catalytic funding attached to this, if they choose to utilise these matching funds.

Once draft-funding requests come in the Global Fund Secretariat country teams engage countries around interventions that have worked and have these conversations. The Global Fund relies on technical partners and civil society in countries to build the actual programmes. Active grant management is respecting a country driven process that includes discussion based on analysis of programmes; asking the right questions; and understanding the funding landscape. The discussion with countries focuses on desired outcomes. The Technical Review Panel (TRP) also plays an important role to ensure that countries focus on achieving the right results.

  • What is happening with the information notes and trainings?

The Global Fund is streamlining all information notes into four on resilient and sustainable health systems, (include community responses); HIV; TB; and malaria. Gender equality will be integrated across all the information notes. The Global Fund is considering developing one on AGYW in high burden settings but that is not decided yet and contingent on what goes into the HIV information note. The Global Fund is thinking through other resources that might be required such as technical briefs. The Global Fund is also running webinar trainings for countries on the strategy as well as on gender as well as more specific trainings for the 13 priority countries and for the Global Fund Secretariat staff – especially the country teams on AGYW.

  • How can the Global Fund Secretariat build skills on gender and human rights in the country teams beyond trainings? And how comprehensive and frequent are these trainings?

The country teams (ultimately responsive for reporting on the KPIs) receive a lot of trainings and these have already been scheduled for 2017 and these trainings cover many issues – not just gender equality. For the AGYW portfolio the Global Fund is in final discussions with donors to fund two new positions – each one supporting 6 countries. These people will report directly to the regional director and spend a great deal of time in countries supporting the work around AGYW.

  • How can we really support community monitoring more than we have been?

There is a big push under SO2 around community based monitoring. The Global Fund Secretariat is now discussing (but this could change as this needs to be resourced) a 5-country focus on supporting community based monitoring models on quality of programmes that could mean very different things. What would be great is at least one of these countries focus on AGYW.

  • Given that the Global Fund only resulted in just under US$13 billion – how will this affect the strategic objective on promoting gender equality and human rights?

This is going to take a great deal of political will – and the catalytic funding will help. The country teams will work to ensure this and at the national level we need robust country dialogues so that interventions we want to see are included in funding requests – if this does not happen the TRP can step in further request adjustments. The TRP has just been replenished with 100 new members. The TRP terms of reference was updated to include human rights and gender expertise including expertise on working with adolescents. Although the Global Fund does not recruit TRP members nor responsible for training the TRP they do provide analysis and the comments from the TRP have improved (more specific and focused) over time.

Next Steps

  • W4GF will be hosting a workshop at the end of 2016. The Global Fund will do a mapping on anticipated dates for the 28 countries that will be submitting funding requests next year;
  • Advocates in countries need to know when things are happening; who the CCM contacts are; when is the country dialogue are taking place and demand to participate;
  • The Community Rights Gender Special Initiative had in the past a technical assistance fund (now going to the Board for approval in November) to support civil society to improve the quality of funding requests which includes having robust country dialogues. This US$15 million can be used for civil society consultation, coordination and strategy development and civil society can apply directly to the Community Rights Gender and do not need to go through CCMs. The Global Fund will be in Nairobi December 6-7 (focusing on Easter and Southern Africa) for a small meeting with women’s groups to engage with them about this initiative and what is the Global Fund and the risk and liabilities of engaging and the need to have adequate resources to meaningfully engage with the Global Fund – especially in Africa.

The webinar was hosted by the W4GF Secretariat – Sophie Dilmitis (Global Coordinator); and attended by 4 participants: Claire Mathonsi, International HIV/AIDS Alliance, UK; Tumainiel Mangi, Hope foundation for social entrepreneurship; Olga Byelyayeva, Eurasian Harm Reduction Network; and from the Community, Rights and Gender (CRG) department from the Global Fund Secretariat included Heather Doyle, Senior Coordinator on gender.