The global AIDS community converges next week in Dakar, Senegal for the 15th Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa taking place from December 3-7. The theme for the biennial meeting, which discusses HIV developments and trends on the continent, is "Africa's Response: Face the Facts".
Based on its 51 years of experience working with communities in Africa, the African Medical and Research Foundation will hold a skills building workshop focusing on "Connecting African communities with their health systems to improve the quality of HIV prevention, care and treatment" on Thursday, December 4. AMREF will also host discussions at the conference on "Unpacking the Paris Principles on aid effectiveness at the community level" on Friday, December 5, based on AMREF's experience in Kenya.
"AMREF believes that communities must be engaged and integrated into health systems if those systems are to be effective and responsive to the health needs of the people. If communities are to be partners in health development, harmonisation of global principles and practices like aid effectiveness should not end at the national level but be incorporated in the way things are done at the community level. Using our Maanisha project as an example, AMREF wants to demonstrate how to bring these global ideals down to the level where the people are and to engage them in making them a reality on the ground," says Dr Daraus Bukenya, AMREF's Director for Community Partnering.
AMREF is one of the key sponsors of the conference and deputy director general Dr Florence Muli-Musiime is a member of the organising committee. Besides the two auxilliary meetings, AMREF will present posters on various projects in Tanzania, Kenya and Ethiopia.