ICW In Action frame top frame right
March 2015 snapshot
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May 2015

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ICW Updates

ICW was highly active in mobilizing women living with HIV to participate in the UNAIDS Strategy Consultation, which will inform their 2016-2021 Strategic Plan. ICW participated in regional consultations as well as the Global Multi Stakeholder Meeting in Geneva on April 22-23rd. ICW encouraged membership to participate in the online consultations, and submitted a written response to the online questions. These were also shared with the Global Coalition on Women and AIDS (GCWA) and the UNAIDS Dialogue Platform for review, as well as ICW had a meeting with Chris Collins at UNAIDS to share our input. Following the lack of a gendered approach and limited mention of women and girls, especially young women and adolescents ICW signed onto the letter of frustration to UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibe, as well as made an intervention that stated their lack of confidence in the consultation process to actively hear the needs of women and girls. Congratulation to the PCB team as well and especially to ICW member Laurel Sprague for her exceptional open remarks during the Multi Stakeholder in Geneva.

The ICPD took place the 13th to 17th of April in NYC. Marvelous Muchenje, ISC Member from ICW North America, and ICW Global Office Staff attended the 48th Session of the UN Commission on Population and Development (CPD48) at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. ICW joined other advocates to push for an inclusive sexual and reproductive health and rights agenda. Unfortunately, after two weeks of thought-provoking and intense discussions, the CPD concluded without a resolution. 

ICW participated in the Post 2015 discussions in NYC where the Global Office represented ICW in monitoring the global discussions around financing for the SDG's and dialogues about Means of Implementation including Capacity Building and technology transfer.

After approximately two years the Stigma Index International partners ICW, GNP+ and UNAIDS had come together. A number of reasons converged that required they do so. ICW and GNP+ have new directors in place since the last meeting. There is no specific grant to support the international coordination of the Stigma Index programme, and concomitantly, there is also no dedicated coordinator in place. There was, therefore, a need to support everyone to get on the same page, and set down the elements of a new strategy and resource mobilisation approach for the Stigma Index and reenergise engagement in the index itself. The two day meeting covered a review of the Stigma Index what’s been achieved, where are we now, an evaluation of the partnership and work to date.

Our dreams and aspirations for the stigma index and where we see it headed and honest reflections on the current international partnership and what we want from it, and finishing up with a clear work-plan and roadmap to move forward. The face to face opportunity gave us the opportunity to not only plan but to build important relationships between the partners and to give each partner an opportunity speak to current priorities and cross cutting issues. It was an extremely productive workshop/meeting, to find out more go to: http://www.stigmaindex.org.

ICW and WGNRR joined forces to host an International Young Women’s Forum in Abuja, Nigeria on April 28-29th. There were 22 participants that ranged from 16 – 29 who identified as both SRHR and HIV advocates. Together the young women explored synergies between movements and are building a global campaign called More than a Status! Our Bodies! Our Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights! #DoYouSeeHIV, that will support the SRHR of young women living with HIV in Nigeria and around the world. Participants were from Jamaica, Russia, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Puerto Rico (US), Nigeria, Mexico, Canada, Egypt, India and Vietnam. Prior to this ICW West Africa convened a strong partnership meeting with a coalition of SRHR and women’s rights organizations who created an advocacy action plan. This is an on going collaboration between ICW, ICWWA and WGNRR with support from STOP AIDS NOW! and Oxfam Novib. 

The Free Space Partners (ICW, NSWP, AIDS Alliance, GATE, ITPC, GNP+, ICASO, HYLF, INPUD, and ICSS) had their annual meeting in Amsterdam. ICW was present and excited to continue to build alliance and relationships with the other Global Networks. The group’s take on the Post 2015 SDGs is to that HIV/AIDS remain in the agenda and that there are stronger indicators to measure than those already proposed. It was noted that engagement with CSO process has already ended and windows of opportunity will only be at national levels. 


We thank and support ICASO who has been working with civil society organizations (CSO) focused on women to ensure issues around SRHR are not left out. Jointly there was a feeling was that CSOs lost a lot of space around decision making tables at during CSW.. It was also noted that a UNDP report showed the countries have gained ground in economic and industrial development and lost ground in human development and what that meant for HIV having also noted that none of the 17 SDGs mentions human rights. The FSP created a joint statement that was submitted the UNAIDS secretariat to inform the 2016-2021 Strategy.

ICW met with the Dutch Minister to talk about Dutch leadership to END AIDS. Present were the Dutch Minister for Trade, The Princess, the UNAIDS Executive Director, Global Fund Representative, Members of Parliament and CSOs working in the Netherlands. The Minister said the Dutch Government recognized the importance of Communities Systems Strengthening and that they were willing to support communities to be able to provide key services. The Minister gave a brief history on how the Bridging the Gap (BTG) fund came to being. ICW stated that women and girls are a vital group to engage in the HIV response yet have been lost in prioritization. We mentioned the various challenges women and girls often go through in accessing HIV prevention and control services. We asked the Dutch Government to consider working with ICW to support in institutional strengthening of our networks as women and especially young women were part of key affected population. We said meaningful inclusion of women living with HIV could only happen if the institutions are strengthen to enable flexible participation of the women and girls in various forums.

The First Global Fund Partnership Forum targeting participants majorly from East, Central and South Africa will be held in Addis Ababa on the 7th – 8th May 2015. The Bangkok Partnership Forum, the second in this series of consultations, will bring together 130 participants from countries in the Middle East and North Africa*, West and South Asia, East Asia and the Pacific. Participation at the Partnership Forum is by invitation only, and stakeholders are invited to put forward nominations. 


The Global Fund partnership has launched a human rights complaints procedure as part of its commitment to protect and promote human rights in the context of fighting AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. The complaints mechanism allows individuals to submit a complaint to the Global Fund’s Office of the Inspector General if any of five minimum human rights standards is believed to have been violated by an implementer of Global Fund grants, in line with the partnership’s commitment to the highest standards of accountability. 

ICW finalized Reports for the Research Collaboration with IAVI, Love Positive Women 2015, and the Commission on the Status of Women. These can be viewed on the website for further reading. http://www.iamicw.org/resources/research

ICW announces the hiring of Florence Anam who will be our new Advocacy and Communications Manager at the Global Office. She will be based in Nairobi, Kenya and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the team. Congratulations Florence! Please contact her at advocacy@iamicw.org

ICW in Action

This month the Members Advocacy Workshop focused on TB and HIV co-infection in women. ICW members and staff participated in this workshop led by Annabel Baddeley from the World Health Organization. Following this workshop ICW released a statement for World TB Day on March 24th. For more information please contact Jessica at communityrelations@iamicw.org


ICW continued to release regular global fund updates and share them with diverse stakeholders inclusive of membership and partners.

Regional Updates

ICW Asia Pacific: Jointly with the Global Office ICWAP has been working on a resource mobilization strategy and building internal structure. ICWAP wants to give love and support to the ICW members in Nepal.

ICW Caribbean: Jamaica continues to host fabulous community building and advocacy workshops for the national members. A proposal was drafted and submitted to UNWomen to support a Caribbean School of Feminism and to do regional movement building work.

ICW Eastern Africa: There was a comprehensive report published by the East African region mapping the funding for Women’s Organization in the HIV response. To find out more: http://www.icwea.org/2015/04/report-are-women-organisations-accessing-funding-for-hivaids/

ICW Europe and Central Asia: Following the February supported by [who] in Georgia, the Eurasian Network with AIDS has submitted documentation to register and will formally be joining the ICW family.

ICW MENA (MENA Rose): There were large demonstrations for El Mahabba for the integration of women and children living with HIV in Libya, Algeria, Tunisia, Bahrain, and Morocco there were ICW members involved in International Women’s Day events. In Tunisia, a major study was conducted on violence against women, with more verdicts over the past five years (50% Tunisian women live different violence) including domestic violence, which is becoming increasingly important. In Egypt, a study titled Sexual and Reproductive Health of Women Living with HIV "needs not addressed and unrealized wishes" was published. In Morocco, there was a great event to ban marriage for young girls and for access to safe abortions. And a large workshop to share experiences between countries in the MENA region (Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria) in International Alliances and partnerships organized by AMSED also took place. As well as. a large National Forum on GIPA. In Morocco there will soon be the Sulvadi. It will be marketed at a low price. Bahrain: Bahrain Reproductive Health and Family Planning Association organizes a big open day in partnership IPPF on raising awareness of HIV and reproductive health. ICW members were involved in these events through Mena Rosa.

ICW North America: Board members Romari Undi and Denise Wozniak attended the Positive Gathering held by the Positive Living Society of BC, Canada. ICWNA member, Laurel Sprague of Michigan, USA was the keynote speaker for the Saturday night gala. Laurel is Research Coordinator of the Global Network of people living with HIV/AIDS, North America (GNP+ NA) and has been a North American delegate for UNAIDS. Romari also had the opportunity to be the Master of Ceremony (MC) at this event! Karen was interviewed by Lia Petridis Maiello for her blog, liamaiello.com see the interview here  http://liamaiello.com/blog/karenmarcinczyk


Marvelous Munchenje, of Ontario, Canada, has been elected to the ICW International Steering Committee (ISC) as our second North American Representative, joining Deloris Dockrey.

ICW West Africa: ICWWA worked with regional sexual and reproductive health and rights networks and organizations in Nigeria to host a national advocacy partners meeting in partnership with WGNRR in Abuja on April 27th. Jointly the coalition drafted a national action plan for their advocacy activities. In collaboration with ICW and WGNRR, a proposal was submitted to sustain the momentum of the coalition. ICWWA hosted 22 young women living with HIV to participate in the Young Women’s Forum and presented research on health care violations to global participants in Abuja, April 28-29th.

CYWAG: Seven members of CYWAG participated in the Young Women’s Strategy Meeting in Abuja and took active facilitation and planning roles to encourage dialogue with young women from the SRHR and HIV movement. Together we helped draft a statement and will be engaging in actions all over the world. L’Orangelis Thomas represented CYWAG at the CSW and has continued to be actively involved in the Sustainable Development Goal discussions in regards to the needs of youth people. CYWAG launched its very own Twitter account. Follow us! @ICW_CYWAG

In The Media


Get Involved!

ICW Members Advocacy Working Group call

13th, May, 2015 will be an update on the advocacy initiatives that ICW has been involved with in the first quarter. This includes CSW, Post 2015 engagement, ICPD, Global Fund and UNAIDS advocating. Please join us at 8am (NYC)/ 3pm (Nairobi). To join the call please contact Velvine at admin@iamicw.com

ICW Members Advocacy Working Group call

10th June, 2015 will be a special presentation on Criminalization of HIV disclosure, exposure and transmission by the Canadian HIV Legal Network. Please join us at 8am (NYC)/ 3pm (Nairobi). To join the call please contact Velvine at admin@iamicw.com

IAS Pathogens Conference 2015 in Vancouver, Canada

Register by May 7th to avoid late fees. http://www.ias2015.org/

ICW needs your input on the International AIDS Conference 2016 in Durban. Please join our open discussion on the ICW members listserve to vote on your preferred theme of the conference. In addition to this we are looking for nominations for Track Committee Members, which are due May 8th, 2015. Please contact Jessica Whitbread at communityrelations@iamicw.org for more details. 

This Month's Profile

Name: Rejoice Abah

Region: Nigeria, West Africa

What She Does: I am an ICW member and the Project Officer of ICWWA. In this role I do peer counselling and implement the regional projects in Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Senegal, Mali, Togo, Burkina Faso, Gambia, Ivory Coast, Niger and Cape Verde.

Who She Is: I am a woman living with HIV, a mother of four, a councelor and an activist. I am also a singer and love sports; football precisely.

On Feminism: I am in support of my fellow women living with HIV, and am of the opinion that women living with HIV be given a voice.

Why Is ICW Important: ICW is important because it a network created to impact the lives of women living with HIV like me, to give voice to the marginalised women, and a platform through which women can advocate for their rights.