East Africa’s Key Populations Gender and Sexual Minorities Demand Vivid Commitment, Not Empty Promises
We are East Africa’s key populations;’ Gender and Sexual Minorities: gay and bisexual men and men who have sex with men; trans and nonbinary people; sex workers in all their diversities; and people who use and inject drugs partially targeted in HIV prevention and treatment services, while lesbian, bisexual and queer women and intersex people excluded from targeted HIV prevention and treatment, Human Rights designed by our national governments, the regional Entities Bilateral and Development Partners Donors. We are on the Pre-Conference and AHEA Awards 2022 physically and virtually attended, and we reflected and agreed thus:
- WHILE our national governments, PEPFAR; CDC; the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; the UN family; Bilateral, and private and public foundations are aware of the word Leave No One Behind; they are failing us: criminalised , marginalised and excluded populations. And not only us—but our sex partners too. And we are demanding nothing less than a revolution in response to the epidemic in our communities to meet three zeros by 2030.
- Unfortunately, donor funding earmarked to address the solutions in key populations, gender, and sexual minorities’ communities does not include targeted initiatives across these subpopulations. Similarly, sex workers funding often excludes male sex workers and transgender sex workers.
- Moreover, The Erupted Diseases like COVID-19, Monkeypox, and Ebola crisis have poured fuel on this fire and badly all countries had no Health Emergency Response mechanism for dealing with any erupted diseases.
- In fact, many Bilateral and Development partners and implementing partners exploit our dedication and labour, paying us virtually nothing for linking our fellow community to services. There is less funding for advocacy to dismantle the structural drivers of these inequitable outcomes. There are many promises in the document but less intensive follow-up on institutional capacity to strengthen communities.
- Likewise, in Community, Human Rights, Safety and Security and Gender programs, mental health investment is less visible from Development partners, the Embassies and the UN (few of them are able to invest while others focus on other platforms).
Overall, we need donors to be accountable, inclusive, responsive, and flexible to adapt to the dynamic and evolving needs of key populations, Gender and Sexual Minorities.
We, East Africa’s Key Populations; of Gender and Sexual Minorities call on:
More money to fund the fight against HIV with the incorporation of Human Rights services
- Donors increase core capacity grants including community-led monitoring programs to improve the quality of services by our identities.
- Donors fully invest in key populations-led service delivery, particularly in legal restrictive settings; Community Clinics, ensuring linkage to prevention and retention in services while promoting people-centred care provided with respect and dignity
- Donors invest in responding to Health Emergency issues facing the targeted community, including safety and security funding for supporting retention to care and treatment services
- Donors support strategic litigation programs/more advocacy technique capacity
- Donors invest in full funding for mental health, care and Sexual Reproductive Health as an essential component of HIV service delivery—encompassing both social and medical dimensions to mental health care to get the HIV respond back on track.
- Donors invest in financial and institutional capacity development of East Africa’s key populations-led organisations to improve their eligibility for direct funding, staff and general operating support
- Donors invest in addressing human rights barriers to healthcare access, including the non-enforcement of current unfriendly laws and policies and protecting open civil society organising spaces including supporting community empowerment programs.
- Donors shift from yield-/targets-driven only approaches to people-centred approaches to funding so that service delivery targets do not come at the cost of service quality, human rights, or dignity
- Donors fully invest in key populations-led innovative Interventions like Digital Platform, research, exchange programs, linking and learning, international and regional events which will network the East African Community
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Endorsers include (in alphabetical order, information ):
African Sex Workers Alliance (ASWA)
Health Options for Young Men on HIV/AIDS/STIs (HOYMAS)
Bridge Initiative Organisation (BIO)
Burundian Association for Women in Action (BAWA)
Tanzania Community Empowerment Foundation (TACEF)
Zanzibar Youth Empowerment Association-ZAYEA
Horizon community association (HOCA)
Rise Initiative for Women’s Right Advocacy (RIWA)
TIA NGUVU PAMOJA (BURUNDI)
Tanzania Community Health Information and Support (TaCHIS)
Trans Support Community Based Organization (TSO)
Rainbow Mirrors Uganda ( RMU)
Southern Youth Trans Initiatives (SYTI)
My true colour (MTC)
Women with Diginity (WWD) Tanzania
Golden Women Initiative (GWI)
Fem Alliance Uganda
Shinyanga Tuinuane Vijana (SHYTV)
Action vision empowerment and advocacy for community (AVEAC)
Health Awareness and Social Development Initiative (HASID+)
Igniting Young Minds Tanzania (IYMT)
Tanzania Trans Initiative
Tanzania Women for Equality and Services(TAWEOS)
Joint Action For Brigh Future Alliance (Rwanda ) JABFA
Building hope for future ( BHF )
Morogoro Wanawake Tunaweza (MOWATU)
Feminists Initiative South Sudan (FEMISS)
Tabora house of empowerment (THE)
Tanzania Youths Behavioural Change Organization (TAYOBECO)
Zamzama Women Development Organization (ZAWODE)
Young Women Support Organization (YOWESO)
Stay Awake Network Activity (SANA)
Zitae Woman Organization (ZITAE)
East Africa Sex Workers Alliance (EASWA)