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VOA News Examines International HIV/AIDS Implementers Meeting

VOA News examines the 2009 HIV/AIDS Implementers Meeting in Windhoek, Namibia, which recently brought together 1,500 people from 55 countries to compare notes on HIV/AIDS programs around the world. The article features comments by Assistant U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator Michele Moloney-Kitts who attended and shared some of her experiences from the meeting.

“What you find is that it’s really, really important for these programs to be locally owned and led. In other words, communities need to decide what’s going to work for them…. And they need to…take charge of the programs. That’s the only way you’re going to ensure long-term continuity, as well as that the programs are really relevant,” Moloney-Kitts said.

The conference addressed how the economic crisis would impact international HIV/AIDS programs, according to Moloney-Kitts. “There was a lot of discussion about how the HIV/AIDS community and programs continue to grow, expand and be effective in a time of not growing resources…about how very important it is that we partner well, that we really look to make sure we’re not wasting any resources” (DeCapua, VOA News, 6/15)

“Three key themes arose repeatedly at the conference: sustainability, efficiency and effectiveness, and prevention,” according to a UNICEF release (UNICEF, 6/14).