The latest in our series, “Experience South Africa,” from Marlijn van Berne is up. “Go Kung Fu Panda in SA: the Art of Surfing, Rock Climbing and Sky Diving,” details some of the excellent outdoor adventure options in South Africa. Check it out!
The South Africa Development Fund is partnering with AIDS 2016 to provide an additional 200 registrations as part of the newly created Civil Society Access Initiative. The initiative is open to those in sub-Saharan Africa working or volunteering in the field of HIV and AIDS who are at least 16 years of age at the time of the conference. People living with HIV and/or belong to a community that is disproportionately affected by HIV especially from rural areas who would otherwise not have the opportunity to attend the conference are strongly encouraged to apply. The scholarship provides registration to the conference only.
Today is the first day that applications to volunteer at AIDS 2016 can be submitted. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis until all ~800 roles are filled. More information is available HERE. Submit your application HERE.
Volunteering is a great way to interact with delegates and to gain some access to the conference at no cost.
Volunteers will help coordinate programme activities, greet visiting delegates, assist with registration, act as guides during the conference, staff various offices and activities, and perform other crucial tasks. Volunteers will receive training and support from the conference volunteer coordinators.
Volunteers will have free access to conference sessions when not on duty, a lunch each working day and will also receive a Certificate of Appreciation.
We now have an active question forum where you can ask anything you want….and we’ll do our best to get you an answer quickly. Unsure about accommodations? Wondering what’s going on with a networking zone? Want to get the latest on demonstrations? Are there harm reduction services in Durban?
By Marlijn van Berne. Many countries around the world have national treasures they celebrate; be it a museum filled with historic and cultural bounty, a mesmerising waterfall that cascades hundreds of meters down a rock face, or other equally loved and revered facets of the nation’s artistic and cultural heritage. But instead of sharing our nationally and internationally recognised ‘treasures’ with you, I am going to give you the low-down on some well-known, and others, not so well-known trinkets; they may not be on any official list, but boy are they special! Read more…
From the Global Network of People Living with HIV…
People living with HIV in all our diversity let’s shape our future!
Ahead of the 21st International AIDS Conference, AIDS 2016, the LIVING partnership is organizing LIVING 2016: the Positive leadership Summit. This international summit brings together hundreds of people living with HIV to articulate a common treatment, care, prevention and rights based advocacy agenda.
We are at a crucial point. We could end the HIV epidemic in our generation, and we know what it would take for all people living with HIV to attain a high quality of life and advance their rights. The World Health Organization now recommends offering HIV treatment to everyone who tests positive for HIV. UNAIDS Fast-Track targets aim that in four years—by 2020—90% of people living with HIV know their status, 90% of people living with HIV receive HIV treatment, and 90% of all people on HIV treatment has reached viral suppression.
But that’s as far as the good news goes. People living with HIV, in particular sex workers, people who use drugs, gay men and other men who have sex with men and transgender people, are still being criminalized and face discrimination, abuse, and even violence. Young people living with HIV have limited access to services; adolescents are dying at twice the rate as adults. At the same time funding for international agencies like UNAIDS and the Global Fund is dwindling. Civil society and networks of people living with HIV, which play a crucial role in realizing access and adherence to HIV testing, treatment and prevention, are structurally underfunded. Community based organisations receive a pitifully low percentage of the already low amount of global aid that goes to civil society, from international and domestic sources alike.
There can be no complacency. For far too long our political leaders have been long on promises and short on performance. We cannot accept any failure to provide the backing necessary to achieving the ambitious objectives we have set for the global HIV response. Ambitious objectives need high political commitment. True commitment means adequate financing, quality access to health services for all people living with HIV, halting human rights violations and criminalisation against people living with HIV and freeing those imprisoned.
A strong movement of people living with HIV is the backbone of accountability in the HIV response. A strong movement is needed to prepare communities and people living with HIV for life long treatment and prevention. People living with HIV have revolutionized access to medication and community engagement in research and care. Meaningful engagement of communities in designing responses that affect them is key. We have held UN agencies, donors and national and local governments to account. We have held ourselves to account. We do and will continue to do so.
At LIVING 2016, the 3rd Positive Leadership Summit, we will develop a common advocacy agenda and formulate the actions we need to ensure the global HIV response delivers for us in all our diversity.
LIVING2016 is only for people living with HIV. The number of participants is limited so apply now at www.gnpplus.net/living2016/join-us/
Let’s shape our future together!
APPLY TODAY – Applications close 10 April.
Due to global currency exchange trends, which have negatively impacted the currencies of many developing economies, the International AIDS Society has taken several steps to support community and civil society participation at AIDS 2016. The new measures, announced on Friday 4 March include:
- Expanded access: We will be providing an additional 200 registrations as part of the newly created Civil Society Access Initiative to increase the number of civil society participants from sub-Saharan Africa.
- Reduced registration cost: The registration fee has been reduced by up to 23 per cent based on a delegate’s country of residence. Detailed information on the revised registration fee is available on the registration fee page here. Individuals who have already paid will be reimbursed the difference.
- Extended early registration deadline: Extending the Early Registration deadline to 28 April at the newly decreased registration rate.
Check out our new post: Do’s and Possibly Do Not’s for traveling to South Africa.
Marlijn van Berne provides insights into the legal and practical considerations of traveling to and around South Africa on our new Visas, Travel, and Security page.
“Official” Pre-conference registration is open; others too
Many pre-conference are being incorporated into the AIDS 2016 programme this year. These are being called “official” pre-conferences, and registration is handled through the AIDS 2016 website. For more information about each meeting, visit the AIDS 2016 pre-conference page here.
In addition, numerous pre-conference activities are being organized which are not “official” pre-conferences. Participation in these events is more similar to all pre-conferences in the past, including separate registration. We will aim to showcase these meetings on this site.
Registration is also open for the International Indigenous Pre-conference on HIV & AIDS on July 16-17. This is an “unofficial” pre-conference. Please visit the IIWGHA page for more information, registration, and to submit abstracts.