Mobilising our efforts for a voice at Vienna


Can we as a constellation of connected people, groups and organizations who have experience with facilitating local responses, mobilize to share our experiences and results at the upcoming XVIII International AIDS Conference in Vienna? This is the challenge UNAIDS recently put to us. The invitation by UNAIDS signals a much greater openness to non bio medical approaches and related results.

Here is the catch: we need to submit as many abstracts as possible by February 10. Please go ahead and submit abstracts with your experience using the Community Life Competence Approach and/or elements of it, such as Aids Competence, Self Assessment or SALT, Human Capacity for Response. Highlight results and measurable progress, for example through self-measurement of change.

The Constellation is not the only group of like minded people who believe in the local capacity for response to AIDS and it is important that everyone who wants to add their voice to the emerging global response can do so. Therefore, feel free to mention any group that is contributing to your progress: AEP, Affirm, AKDN, ADB, GLIA, World Vision, RBP+, RDCcompetence, and many others.

If you have already submitted your abstract, or if you are preparing one, please join now where we can assist each other in meeting this challenge. Sumon Vangchuay ( will support our collective effort. Please feel free to contact her if you need any support or further information.

We will be happy to help publicize and promote your abstracts, whether they will be approved or not. Please note that we are not in a position to commit funding for participants to the conference.

For easy reference, we have summarized information and possibilities for abstract submission, as well as for scholarship in the attached document XVIII International AIDS Conference-1-2.doc. For more details please refer to the conference site on

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Comment by Sumon Vangchuay on February 2, 2010 at 12:01am

In addition to oral abstract proposal, the Constellation, AFFIRM and AEP have formed an inclusive working group to work on applying for a workshop-based/interactive session. We have agreed that the workshop format is the way to go if we are to involve participants in a hands-on exercise. Here are some basic requirements so please feel free to post or send along your ideas.

1. We will submit a workshop proposal under the focus area: *Community Skills Development*. Under this focus area, we've agreed that 'Community Strengthening: How to build community skills for impact on the HIV/AIDS response' (fixed wording provided) is the one most closely describes our workshop.

2. *Title (50 words)* something along the line of 'Communities Can Measure Their Own Progress'

3. Content (250 words) on learning Objectives, format and materials* (Note that we have to be extremely concise)

4. Target audience: We have to specify professions of anticipated participants (we can pick more than one, of course!)

5. Number of participants: 51-100

6. Language: English

7. Duration: 3 hrs

8. Facilitators: AEP, AFFIRM, Constellation (and possibly UNPFA-Indonesia?)

We will be notified of the acceptance in April. During which time, any ideas, stories or comments to share please forward along. And you are also very welcome to join our working group! Please email me at

Comment by Kindyomunda Rosemary on February 1, 2010 at 7:37pm
Happy New Year!

The conference would indeed provide a great opportunity for a global meet which can re-energize some of us who are not in day to day contact with the connected people

Besides submitting abstracts and requesting for scholarships, what are the possible plans for selling the community life competence approach? Often principles promoted at that level are easily sold at national level. Is there a possibility of a side session for knowledge sharing beyond presenting individual abstracts in different sessions? I am aware this might involve some resources but it might be worth exploring since some Constellation members might be supported to attend the conference and link with other people working with communities applying different approaches



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