Scaling Up Civil Society Organizations (CSO) responses in the national HIV response

Since its establishment, ACHIEVE has actively engaged as an NGO/CSO in the national HIV response. Among the significant milestone events it has participated in are: the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on HIV and AIDS (UNGASS) country reporting process; the national HIV and AIDS monitoring and evaluation process; national AIDS conferences; the annual World AIDS Day events and International AIDS Candlelight Memorial celebrations, among others. ACHIEVE has also participated in numerous consultations, workshops and trainings on HIV and AIDS, and has consistently championed the issue of migration, gender, sexuality, and CSO/PLHIV participation.
In December 2009, with support from the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS (UNAIDS), Action for Health Initiatives (ACHIEVE), Inc. organized two consultations with CSOs working on HIV and AIDS. The consultations  were held in Metro Manila (for Metro-Manila and Luzon NGOs) and Cebu City (for Visayas and Mindanao-based organizations), with a total of 29 NGOs participating. The main purpose of the consultations was to enable CSOs to discuss the “2006 AIDS Commission Report on AIDS in Asia”, as a tool for CSO advocacy in the Philippines. It also provided a venue for the participants to understand the implications of the report on CSO involvement and participation in the HIV response, particularly with regards to issues of sustainability, effective programming, resource utilization, accountability, representation and GIPA. A concrete resolution from the discussions of both consultations was for the participants to continue and sustain the discussions related to CSO involvement, through the electronic Pinoy-UNGASS forum.
A follow-up workshop was held in March 2010, with 20 organizations from Metro Manila, Visayas, and Mindanao participating.  This workshop affirmed the need for CSOs to actively engage in a number of national events and processes affecting the national HIV response, including the development of the 5th AIDS Medium Term Plan (AMTP) and the concluded National AIDS Summit. The participants also discussed the possibility of forming a national HIV and AIDS CSO network, but they agreed to pend any decisions on the matter, until a thorough discussion among CSOs has transpired.