EECA Consortium and World AIDS day: what Platform partners did, talked about and called upon on 1 December

To support World AIDS day, Regional Platform-EECA prepared several publications on events, initiatives and calls presented by the project partners, key donors of response to epidemics and other stakeholders.

Relevant publications will appear on the website and of the project pages in social networks Facebook and Twitter during following next couple of days. The project also supported a campaign of international organization (RED) on its Facebook page and made its profile photo red.

Yesterday we told about UNAIDS position, today we share information from organizations, which implement RP-EECA project as a part of EECA Consortium, that is from key technical assistance providers and regional networks of communities from Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

  1. Alliance for Public Health (Alliance, former International HIV/AIDS Alliance in Ukraine)

PR-EECA project is implemented by Alliance-Ukraine Consultancy (at the head of EECA Consortium), subsidiary company of Alliance for Public Health. AUC completely supports position of Alliance and would like to share this position and information on key action and campaign organized by Alliance.

This year on World AIDS day, 1 December, Alliance for Public Health together with partner civil organizations organized first in Ukraine action of self-testing in the center of Kiev and supported international UNAIDS campaign “Hands up for #HIVprevention” – “MUSIC FEST – MAKE A TEST”. This action was simultaneously conducted in other cities of Ukraine – Kharkov, Odessa, Poltava. This year, in contrast to previous years, action participants could not only make a free HIV test, but also receive disposable test-system, pretest consultation and informational materials to make this test independently at home. More than a thousand free tests were distributed. We would also like to remind that on 29 November World Health Organization (WHO) issued new Guidance on HIV self-testing.


Besides, a couple of days before Alliance started a thematic flashmob #PutRedRibbonOn#ПовяжиЧервонуСтрічку#ПовяжиКраснуюЛенточку. Within this flashmob for the first time the longest “Red ribbon” in Ukraine with the length of 20 meters was spread out opposite red building of Kiev national university named after T. Shevchenko!

To participate in this flashmob, employees, friends and like-minded people from different countries warmed their favorite heroes/monuments/statues with red scarves and ribbons, took photo and posted them in social networks with the relevant hashtag. The most creative participants will be selected according to the results of online voting.


On the Alliance Facebook page you can find more detailed photo-report on this action.

On Alliance website you can also find informational message in Ukrainian and English, which describes main achievements in HIV prevention in Ukraine and contains call to make prevention a state priority and unite efforts of all stakeholders.

  1. East Europe and Central Asia Union of People Living with HIV (ECUO)

ECUO published an announcement, and in order to prevent degradation of the situation due to transition of countries from the region to national funding, to prevent existing barriers (including challenges with providing sufficient financial support of programs to provide all complex of services connected to HIV infection (including prevention, testing, reference to receive medical services and keeping clients in treatment programs), particularly for stigmatized and criminalized groups), called:

  • Government:
    • to take responsibility for fundingmeasures in response to HIV from internal sources. These measures should be based on actual data, be oriented on key populations and take into consideration gender and age peculiarities.
    • to apply transparent, flexible and innovative approaches in issues of purchase of ART-medication to provide sustainable access to high-quality treatment of HIV infection and to provide minimally possible prices on effective medication, including encouragement of competition among producers of identic medication-generic and use of opportunities of Agreement on trade-related aspects of intellectual property rights (TRIPs
  • International community— to provide technical assistance so that countries could develop realistic plans and mechanisms for consequent transition to national funding during next 5-10 years.
  • National programs — should provide access to ART for all PLWH, willing to start treatment, and consultations should be targeted to stimulating its early start.

Vladimir Zhovtiak, president of ECUO, also made a video address «Together we will take HIV epidemics under control!»

ECUO pages in social networks Facebook and Twitter all day long posted different pieces of information on actions of PLWH organizations in the countries of the region; ECUO employees also supported campaign of UNAIDS “Hands up for #HIVprevention”!

3. Eurasian harm reduction network (EHRN)

On this day, EHRN reminded everyone that “Money can buy health!” and the importance of funding the programs aimed at people who use drugs.


The rise in HIV in EECA is directly related to bans on some services and the lack of essential prevention services such as harm reduction measures, substitution therapy, as well as low access for people who use drugs (PWUD) to antiretroviral therapy (ART) and sustainable engagement programs. Most these programs were funded by foreign donors, and the governments are in no rush to provide sufficient funding to the AIDS response.

In the second half of 2016 EHRN assessed investments and gaps in the financing of the continuum of HIV-related services (from prevention, diagnostics to treatment and care) for key affected populations. Detailed analysis of country progress reports on the global AIDS response as well as statistics and other data showed the allocations to be insufficient and sometimes misused in the EECA countries. A very low coverage of key populations appears to be the main driving force behind the spread of HIV in the region.

“…Therefore, we will not stop repeating – sometimes even 10 cents for harm reduction can turn the epidemic around. And now is the time to make that decision!””

– says Anna Dovbakh, Acting Executive Director of EHRN.

3. Eurasian coalition on male health (ECOM) 
ECOM also issued a position statement, in which it draws attention to the alarming trends point to a worsening AIDS epidemic among MSM and trans* people. New evidence suggests that the number of HIV-positive MSM continues to increase rapidly in the region, but that the efforts of governments and civil society remain insufficient to stabilize the situation.
With the decrease in funding from international sources, especially the Global Fund, taking place, it seems particularly important to change the position of governments by mobilizing organizations and activists from the LGBT community to participate in active advocacy, and by providing them with quality data on the effect of MSM and trans* people on the HIV epidemic and on the effectiveness of existing interventions.

In order to change the existing situation as quickly as possible, ECOM calls upon:

  • GAY AND TRANS* COMMUNITIES: to strengthen advocacy sustainability and expand HIV services;
  • GOVERNMENTAL STRUCTURES: to ensure national funding of targeted HIV programs for MSM and trans* people;
  • INTERNATIONAL STRUCTURES: to provide technical support to communities and governmental structures in the region.

4. Sex worker rights advocacy network (SWAN)

SWAN expressed solidarity with all people, living with HIV, and is also planning to share inforamtion about events carried out by its members. Also SWAN informed the region about a new website –  NSWP+ – a platform launched by NSWP for HIV positive sex workers and people committed to treatment access and equal rights for sex workers living with HIV.

5. Eurasian network of people, who use drugs (ENPUD)
ENPUD published an interesting article in Russian, which describes the story behind World AIDS Day and the red ribbon campaigns. World AIDS Day was first commemorated in 1988 and the red ribbon idea first appeared in 1991 as a symbol of support and sympathy to HIV positive people. Since 2000 we have seen the red ribbon as a symbol of WAD and it is used worldwide.
6. TB Europe Coalition (TBEC)
TBEC shared a strong message from Dr Lucica Ditiu, the Executive Director of Stop TB Partnership.
Учитывая, что ВИЧ и туберкулез часто идут рука об руку, и что туберкулез продолжает быть основным убийцей людей, живущих с ВИЧ, этот день имеет особое значение для людей, затронутых туберкулезом – так же, как и Всемирный день борьбы с туберкулезом имеет особое значение для людей, живущих с ВИЧ.
1. As humanity, we will not be able to end AIDS if we do not end TB. TB kills one in four people living with HIV and in the African region, co-infection rates can be as high as 80%. We will either be successful together or we will fail together.

2. The people who are affected the most, suffering the most, are those who belong to the most vulnerable groups, not just in the face of HIV/AIDS or TB, but in the face of any disease, in the face of life and death. All of our efforts and everything we do should start and end with them in the center.

If we want to strengthen HIV or TB prevention, bolster diagnosis and treatment, ensure adherence, we must allow the people and the communities to lead… allow them to decide for themselves… they should be the ones leading, on their own terms and at their own rhythm and pace. If we want to see gender equality, equity, respect for human rights. If we want to see sustainability, tolerance and respect for everyone, we need to make sure that the ones affected are leading, deciding and evaluating.

Read the full message – here.