2018 was a very important year for AFEW International, especially because of the 22nd International AIDS Conference ‘Building Bridges, Breaking Barriers’ in Amsterdam. With the focus on EECA, the AFEW network contributed to the EECA buzz during plenary sessions, panel discussions and the communities’ zone at the conference as well as across the city of Amsterdam through various cultural activities. Together with our partners we did a great job and increased representation from the EECA region from 3,9% to 10,5%, compared to AIDS 2016.
We continued to implement a lot of projects. One of them was “Bridging the Gabs: health and rights for key populations 2.0’, which programs have been executed in 4 countries: Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Ukraine. We piloted an innovative approach in the project ‘Improved TB/HIV prevention & care – Building Models for the Future’, we had a lot of activities in Russia and supported the Andrey Rylkov Foundation for Health and Social Justice to deliver services to people who use drugs in Moscow. Also, within the project ‘Fast-track TB/HIV responses for key populations in EECA cities’ we organized study tour to Amsterdam for healthcare professionals, municipal representatives and NGO staff from Kazakhstan, Georgia and Ukraine, and supported 3 training seminars within the Cities Project in Georgia.
Elton John AIDS Foundation Emergency Support Fund
AFEW International together with Aidsfonds received funding for 3 years from the Elton John AIDS Foundation to manage the Emergency Support Fund for Key Populations in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. This is an important Fund for us because nowadays not more than 30% of people living with HIV in EECA can currently access the treatment.
All these results are only a small part of what we have done over the past year. Our goal is to keep the attention to the EECA region and its challenges. Therefore, we will continue to advocate at the international, regional and national levels for support for the key populations at risk for HIV, TB and viral hepatitis.