October 22 2018 0Comment

African-Led Civil Society Network Characteristics

Background:

The Africa Free of New HIV Infections (AfNHi) commissioned an assessment in order to map national level organisations undertaking biomedical HIV prevention research advocacy, or that have an interest therein. Opportunities and enablers for an expanded African led civil society network driving biomedical HIV prevention research advocacy were explored.

Methods:

Organisations were identified through AfNHi member networks and desktop research. Desktop research was hampered by a lack of up to date verifiable information, outdated directories and poor coverage of NPTs in general. Data was collected through an online survey and in-depth semi structured interviews. Information pertaining to existing knowledge, involvement and capacity building interests in NPTs were collected.

Findings Snapshot: African-Led Civil Society Network Characteristics

Participant countries were made up of Botswana, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Programme areas shared most frequently included a focus on young people, a key population, community systems strengthening, health promotion, health advocacy/access, and representing national networks.

Existing stakeholders for PrEP roll-out significantly outnumbered that of any other NPT, long-acting PrEP and BNAbs had the least. Participants felt ‘knowledgeable’ about vaccines and microbicides. Overall participant knowledge and involvement varied per prevention tool, from ‘Very little knowledge’; to ‘Existing stakeholder’. The overwhelming proportion of participants expressed a need for greater community engagement and consultation on NPTs.

Conclusion:

The assessment found that participants share synergistic programme areas supporting regional collaboration among existing implementers and offering guidance for national mobilisation of new implementers. Coordination efforts for capacity building and mobilisation of support across NPTs among existing advocates should be further explored.

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