NEWSROOM February 28, 2017

MSA 2017’s Programme Planning Meeting among the new Principal Recipient Save the Children and the Grant’s Sub-recipients

Save the Children – Nepal in its new role of Principal Recipient for the Multi Country South Asia Global Fund HIV Programme (MSA) hosted a two-day Program Planning Meeting with Sub-Recipients (SRs) on 7- 8 February 2017, in Kathmandu, Nepal. A total of 47 participants attended the planning meeting from seven countries of the national sub-recipients (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) and the regional sub-recipient APCOM, which is based in Bangkok, Thailand.

Delailah (Lala) Borja, Country Director, Save the Children, Nepal & Bhutan Country Office in her opening remarks told that it is a privilege and pleasure to have such a diverse group of people in one forum and shared her excitement on the fact that Save the Children Nepal is stepping up in regional arena of HIV prevention.

The keynote speeches were addressed by Dr. Philippe Creac’H, Global Fund‘s Senior Fund Portfolio Manager, Dr. Ruben del Prado, UNAIDS Nepal‘s Country Director, Robert Clay, Save the Children US‘ Vice President of Global Health, and Dr. Tarun Paudel, Nepal’s National Centre for AIDS and STD Control‘s Director.

The implementation of the MSA grant through Save the Children is a new chapter for this grant. [..] Save the Children is closer to the civil society organization. The MSA grant also fits with the new strategy of the Global Fund that focusses on human and gender rights.

Dr. Creac’H said, the implementation of the MSA grant through Save the Children is a new chapter for this grant. He stated, Save the Children is closer to the civil society organization. The MSA grant also fits with the new strategy of the Global Fund that focusses on human and gender rights. Despite the fact that there has been significant progress in the health sector, there is huge setback regarding the rights of the gender minorities. Having said so, the Global Fund is confident that this grant will make a noteworthy intervention in the countries. The Global Fund has been flexible to re-orient and re-adapt the grant in order to enhance the impact of the grant. The only concern regarding this grant is its future, and the secretariat is in a discussion on how to ensure its continuation in the future.

Dr. Ruben del Prado urged each and everyone in the room to continue active interventions and be a part of this global movement to fight HIV. He stated that it is only natural to have setbacks in courageous movements, but we should learn to build on our strengths. He concluded his speech with the message. “Doing more is the key to success.”

…Save the Children through the MSA grant would be able to build the capacity of the partner organizations and their countries to stop HIV & AIDS as an epidemic.

Dr. Robert Clay shared that he had worked in the Asia region for 36 years. He added that health is the largest sector in Save the Children; and Save the Children commits to using the organization’s experience and expertise in enabling this grant to become a success. He shared the Global Fund is a high performing grant and it has contributed immensely, but there is still a lot to be dealt with. Dr. Clay shared that he believed that Save the Children through the MSA grant would be able to build the capacity of the partner organizations and their countries to stop HIV & AIDS as an epidemic.

Dr. Tarun Paudel announced that the HIV & AIDS strategy for 2016 – 2021 has just been disseminated and it directs focus of the program towards case detection and management of each individual living with HIV. Finally, Dr. Paudel stated that identification, reach, recommendation, testing, treatment and retaining (IRRTTR) is the major emphasis of the HIV response in Nepal and he is confident that this strategy will contribute in fast track to end the AIDS epidemic.

This meeting eventually built cohesiveness and partnering with the SRs in South Asia region. All MSA partners shared their plans, challenges and ways forward in relation to the Grant. As a part of the meeting, Save the Children and all MSA sub-recipients partners refined annual workplans, budget and performance frameworks. The meeting held in a positive ambiance and ended with the plan to meet in a second half of the year.