Promoting and protecting human rights and gender equality is an objective of the Global Fund Strategy 2017 – 2022 and should provide robust opportunities for community advocates addressing gender inequality in HIV, TB and malaria to participate and access resources. However, a recent report commissioned by UNAIDS on the Prioritization in Global Fund Grants: revealed that out of 46 funding requests submitted in the 2020-2022 allocation cycle indicated that only 1 had utilized a gender assessment in its funding prioritization process. The Grant Cycle 7 (GC7) added the Gender Equality Marker that must accompany all grant funding submissions with the expectation of a gender assessment in all three components, this tosystematically assess, strengthen and report on the extent to which the funding is working to advance gender equality.
However, after discussions with networks of women living with HIV , many networks who were engaging in Global Fund processes remained uninformed about the requirements or benefits of the gender assessments and reported not being involved in the gender assessment. Women living with HIV reported a lack of support for their engagement in Global Fund processes and persistent challenges ensuring their priorities were well represented in the proposal development processes.
ICW and Women4GlobalFund in collaboration with Via Libre / LAC Platform sought to strengthen the ability of f of networks to utilize the the gender assessment tool and how this can support countries as they assess HIV epidemics, contexts, and responses through a gender lens to achieve gender transformative responses, that are equitable and rights based. Gender assessments can play an important role in supporting changes during the review of national strategic plans (NSPs) and inform funding requests submitted to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
Strengthen the capacity and engagement of women living with HIV utilizing evidence -based advocacy from networks of women living with HIV to ensure gender equity in Global Fund processes including the development of country proposals and funding prioritization.
SUMMARY OF RECOMMENDATIONS: 5 Key Takeaways
- Networks of women living with HIV can demand to be engaged in the development of the required Gender Assessments. The process must reflect the lived realities and priorities as identified by women living with HIV in their diversity
- Gender Assessments reveal how well gendered concerns are integrated across the HIV response, where responses are gender transformative and where there are gaps in gender responsive programming.
- Gender Assessments should be a baseline for investments in gender equity, they should not limit or constrain community demands for additional priorities for gender equitable interventions.
- More space for participation, information and knowledge sharing should be created for women’s networks that are beginning the work of participating in the Global Fund’s grant cycles, accessible in different languages.
- Women with HIV must have financial, political and technical support to have a sustained involvement in consultative processes, priority identification and proposal writing in order to work on all interventions related to women and girls in the three diseases.