SAfAIDS Unveils Social Contracting Framework for Effective HIV Response

By Ntokozo Gudu in Mutare

SAfAIDS and Zimbabwe Community Health Intervention Research ( ZCHIRe) convened a capacity strengthening dialogue for stakeholders to effectively disseminate and implement the Social Contracting guidelines under the banner of the United for Protection Coalition, in Mutare recently.

The dialogue was targeting the National AIDS Council as the key institution for decision making on social contracting, bringing together Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) on how to effectively input into the existing guidelines.

The conversation highlighted the need to increase domestic financial resources and expand  revenue streams to for supporting social programs by exploring options for revenue streams such as sintax , sugartax , third part insurance and mobile tax which government recently announced that it will be taking control of.

Presenting the report, National AIDS Council (NAC) representative, Simbarashe Maquina highlighted on the current social contracting policy guidelines, emphasizing on the need to review and re-look at them so that they become more effective while they acknowledge the importance of a locally funded grant.

These social contracting policy guidelines were developed through a consultative process encompassing engagements with national and international stakeholders, the process included a comprehensive literature review predominantly focusing on best practices in public financing of CSOs service provision in national responses to HIV,” he said.

He said that funds should be allocated for clearly defined goals and priorities in line with public health needs.

“Application and selection procedures should be clear and transparent, provide maximum clarity and openness. Funding should be allocated for clear defined goals and priorities in line with government policies and public health needs ,” he added.

SafAIDS Representative, Letwin Chanakira gave an the overview of the United for Prevention Country programme.

“Social Contracting is implemented as per the Policy Guideline to Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and financial support to society led HIV and AIDS Service Delivery,” she said.

“By widely disseminating the Social Contracting Policy Guidelines communities and CSOs will be enabled to understand and function better with the full knowledge  of the guidelines ,the call for proposals under social contracting and matters related to the HIV response.”

Zimbabwe Community Health Intervention Research (ZICHIRe) Director Walter Chikanya spoke on the anticipated impacts of strengthening stakeholder capacity on social contracting.

“For the dissemination we went for grassroots organizations so that they also have an understanding  of what NAC is doing ,right now there is donor flight and there are chances of losing donors in the future years, so worldwide there is a talk of increasing domestic resource mobilization ,so this is one innovative way of resource mobilization so in the long term we guarantee that we have our own resources in the country that can support the response,” he said.

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