Meeting of Women’s Networks and Organizations from Latin America and the Caribbean for Cairo +15

August 20, 2009

After the 42nd session of the Commission on Population and Development (CPD), held by the United Nations (UN) this year in New York, it’s time for civil society to monitor the Program of Action established by the countries in the International Conference on Population and Development which took place in Cairo, in 1994.

The Meeting of Women’s  Networks and Organizations from Latin America and the Caribbean for Cairo +15 took place in Panama (3rd, 4th and 5th of August), with the participation of Gestos and LACCASO, besides other organizations that are part of the Monitoring UNGASS-AIDS goals on Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Health Project, such as FEIM (Argentina) and MYSU (Uruguay). Among the monitored actions: the policies to fight against HIV/AIDS, to promote gender equity and the eradication of violence against women. Besides that, the meeting was a preparation for the Global Forum of NGO for Cairo +15, next September in Germany.


Integrated Plan to Confront the Feminization of AIDS and other Sexually Transmitted Diseases of Pernambuco

August 20, 2009

Between 6th and 7th of August, Recife held a workshop to elaborate Pernambuco’s Integrated Plan to Confront the Feminization of AIDS and other Sexually Transmitted Diseases. The Articulation Pernambuco AIDS, National Network of People Living With HIV/AIDS, Women’s Forum of Pernambuco and the Feminist Network of Health participated in the activity. The workshop was coordinated by the Women’s Secretary of Pernambuco and had the support of many secretaries and coordinations from the state cities, such as Recife and Caruaru.

 A revised version of the Integrated Plan to Confront the Feminization of AIDS and other Sexually Transmitted Diseases is available at the Brazilian Special Secretary of Policies for Women.

UNGASS Forums around the world

August 20, 2009

Over the years, the participation of the civil society on monitoring the international policies of AIDS has increased. The follow-up of the commitments agreed by the governments in 2001, in the United Nations, has been the main outstanding aspect out of this process. In this perspective, after the experience in Brazil, the UNGASS-AIDS Forums have already began in Africa, Asia and Latin America aiming to integrate international discussions to the local issues and to strength the policies of sexual and reproductive health in the “four corners of the world”.

Phase 2009-2010

Africa – Uganda was the first country to hold the III UNGASS-AIDS Forum, in Kampala, between the 4th and 5th of June. Thirty-six members of people living with HIV networks, NGOs and government ministries (Gender and Development and Health) were there to discuss strategies of advocacy for the monitoring of the government’s commitments to reduce the AIDS epidemic and to improve the public policies on sexual and reproductive rights.

The outcome was an advocacy plan to be implemented between July/2009 and August/2010, using lobby, communication and networking as tools. Besides, the project intends to develop a research in the country focusing on violence against women and on sexual, reproductive and health education.

The city of Cape Town was chosen to hold the III South Africa Forum, on June 8th and 9th. The meeting, in the house of MOSAIC (a NGO) had two days of intense discussions about health and sexual and reproductive rights, with the participation of 20 Health, Women, HIV/AIDS and GLB movement organizations. An advocacy plan was also drawn, pointing out some issues as cervical cancer, abortion and sterilization. The cold from the beginning of the winter in the country wasn’t enough to cool down the temperature of the discussions and working plans!

In Kenya, the III UNGASS-AIDS Forum took place in Nairobi, on the 7th and 8th of July, with the participation of 40 organizations. The goal to strengthen the monitoring of the public policies of sexual and reproductive health drove the coordination of the forum to invest in communication – the KBC TV prepared a program about the UNGASS Forum and a radio program entitled  “Afya ya Usazi” about reproductive health. Members of Uganda’s project participated in the meeting to help with the process. The relation with the media has been fairly explored in the country as a support of the project actions.

Asia – The debates about the monitoring of the sexual and reproductive goals in Asia have advanced a lot. Thailand’s Government, in partnership with the Thailand NGO Coalition on AIDS (TNCA), held the XII National Seminar on Aids, between the 28th and 30th of March, in Bangkok and included in some of the sessions the UNGASS-AIDS theme. Symposiums, workshops, community spaces and campaign activities were some of the actions of the Seminar, which gathered approximately 850 NGOs. Many of the information were disseminated through communication channels.

One of the sessions was dedicated to present the study done in 2008 by the Thailand UNGASS-AIDS Forum and coordinated by the Raksthai Foundation. This study, incorporated to the Country Report sent to UNAIDS in 2008, focused on the vertical transmission (mother-to-child). From this study, the government informed it will do a deeper research for 2010.

In Indonesia, the II UNGASS-AIDS Forum took place in Jakarta, between the 28th and the 30th of May. These two days were very productive with the definition of important working strategies to the country, among them, the elaboration of the Country Report, to be sent to UNAIDS, in partnership with the National Commission of AIDS and the gathering of qualitative data to write a civil society report on women sexual and reproductive health.

The Indonesia UNGASS-AIDS Forum, coordinated by JOTHI, held in June/July meetings with the National Commission of AIDS aiming to monitor the country’s answer to de Declaration of Commitments signed in the High Level Meeting of UNGASS, in 2001, New York.

 Latin America – The Latin American forums have begun at the end of July. Uruguay is the first country to discuss the monitoring of targets, making the III UNGASS Forum on the days 31st of July and 01st of August. Argentina, Brazil, Belize, Nicaragua and Peru are in the process of organization. In parallel, the state, municipal and regional Forums in Brazil are already happening – the state of Paraiba was the first, the event took place on August 6th.

Brazil begins to discuss the elaboration of its Country Report to UNGASS/AIDS 2010

August 20, 2009

Aiming to show that Brazil has accomplished the commitments assumed in 2001 to the UNGASS Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS, the STD and AIDS National Department of the Health Ministry will write, this month, the Brazilian report under the National AIDS Commission’s responsibility.

A Working Group has been formed by members of Brazil UNGASS/AIDS Forum, CNAIDS (Civil Society and other movements), United Nations and Technical Areas of the National STD and AIDS Department to discuss and prepare the report. The idea is to show which UNGASS/AIDS goals have and haven’t been accomplished in the period from 2001 to 2009.

Countries might hand in their reports up to the 21st of March, 2010. Brazil intends to begin writing its Country Report in August and finish it this year. The Working Group has the challenge to present a first report by October. This document will be useful to make the country aware of its difficulties and progresses regarding the fight against AIDS. 

Brazil UNGASS/AIDS will work on producing contents, such as the research about Sexual and Reproductive Health focusing on SRH, Sexual Education and Violence against Women and will discuss with the Working Group how this document could be incorporated to the Country Report.

Actions of the UNGASS/AIDS in the northeast of Brazil

August 20, 2009

In its new phase, the Project “Monitoring the UNGASS-AIDS goals on Women Sexual and Reproductive Health” – with actions in twelve countries and four continents – couldn’t forget the region where the whole process of monitoring began. It will be held in Recife, city of the first Brazil UNGASS-AIDS Forum, a capacity building workshop for women of all northeastern states about sexual and reproductive rights, AIDS and violence this semester. Women from women rights groups and networks, women living with HIV from RNP+ (National Network of PLWA), MNCP (National Movement of Positive Women Citizens), from Youngsters living with HIV and AIDS Network and also public policy makers of AIDS and sexual and reproductive health policies will be participating.

The workshop’s objective is to promote sexual and reproductive rights as a starting point of public policies on fighting the feminization of AIDS and to set an advocacy agenda for 2010.