R eg i onal A i d s Trai ni ng Network
Annual Report 2011- 2012 RATN has continued to facilitate through its Member Institutions, the identification, development, and delivery of quality training and capacity building programmes for effective HIV and AIDS response in Eastern and Southern Africa region. The report highlights major achievements during the financial year running 1st April 2011 to 31st March 2012.
Contents Abbreviations........................................................................................................................ 2 Board Chairâ€™s Message ........................................................................................................ 4 Executive Directorâ€™s Message ............................................................................................. 6 Board of Directors................................................................................................................. 8 Executive Summary.............................................................................................................. 9 1 Introduction.....................................................................................................................11 2 Training and Capacity Development............................................................................ 15 3 Networking and Partnerships Development............................................................... 22 4 Knowledge and Information Management.................................................................. 25 5 Research, Monitoring and Evaluation......................................................................... 27 6 Grants and Business Development ............................................................................ 30 7 Institutional Strengthening........................................................................................... 31 8 Mainstreaming Gender.................................................................................................. 33 9 Reflections and Lessons Learnt.................................................................................. 34 10 Financial Performance.................................................................................................. 36 Annexes............................................................................................................................... 40 List of RATN Member Institutions...................................................................................... 34
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ABBA AIDS AMREF ART ASOs BCC CB CIDA CSOs CSS DfID EAC ESA FP/RH GC GWG HCT HIPo-Africa HIT HIV HRQS ICASA IDUs INSTANT ISTT IT JFA KAPC KAVI KHI KIM LVCT MCHS MDG
Addressing the Balance of Burden of AIDS Acquired Immuno-Deficiency Syndrome African Medical and Research Foundation Anti Retro-viral Treatment AIDS Service Organisations Behavioural Change Communication Capacity Building Canadian International Development Agency Civil Society Organisations Community Systems Strengthening Department for International Development East African Community Eastern and Southern Africa Family Planning/Reproductive Health General Council Gender Working Group HIV Counseling and Testing Harnessing Indigenous Potentials in Africa Training Information Hub Human Immuno Virus Health Related Quality Study International Conference on HIV and AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Diseases Injecting Drug Users Initiative for Strengthening HIV/AIDS Training and Networking In Service Training Trust Information Technology Joint Financing Arrangement Kenya Association for Professional Counselors Kenya AIDS Vaccine Initiative Kigali Health Institute Knowledge and Information Management Liverpool VCT Care and Treatment Malawi College of Health Sciences Millennium Development Goals
Member Institution Management Sciences for Health Men who have Sex with Men Mid Term Review National AIDS Control Council National AIDS Councils Kenya National AIDS and STI Control Programme Network Partnership and Advocacy People Living with HIV Programme Management Course People with Disability Quality Assurance Regional African AIDS NGOs RATN Alumni Grants Initiative Regional AIDS Training Network Results Based Monitoring Results Based Capacity Building for AIDS Service Organisation Request For Applications Request for Proposals RATN Training Monitoring and Evaluation System Southern African Development Community Southern Africa HIV and AIDS Information and Dissemination Service Swedish International Development Agency Short Term Technical Assistance Sex Workers Training Needs Assessment Training of Trainers Uganda National Health Consumers Organisation University of Manitoba University of Nairobi United States Agency for International Development Voluntary Counseling and Testing Zimbabwe Open University
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MI MSH MSM MTR NACC NACs NASCOP NPA PLHIV PMA PWD QA RAANGO RAIG- RATN RBM RECABASO RFA RFP RTMES SADC SAfAIDS Sida STTA SW TNA TOT UNHCO UOM UON USAID VCT ZOU
Board Chair’s Message
he Financial Year 2011/2012 has been a significant period for the Regional AIDS Training Network (RATN). As it comes to an end, this financial year has seen tremendous developments and achievements within the network as well as sustained continued efforts towards achieving the vision of the network.
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During this period, RATN has made notable steps towards capacity building for effective HIV response amongst its Member Institutions and other partners. Results Based Management is critical to every organisation that has to remain alive to its vision, mission and objectives. RATN is committed to this and has, in partnership with Eastern Africa National Network of AIDS Service Organisations (EANNASO) initiated a project to enhance and instil Results Based Management amongst AIDS Service Organisations. Dubbed the comprehensive Results-Based Management Capacity Building for HIV and AIDS Service Organisations (RECABASO), this is a RATN initiative funded by the Swedish International Development Agency (Sida) and implemented across the ESA region. We also had an opportunity to conduct a Mid-Term Review (MTR) of our current Strategic Plan 20092014 during the just ended financial year. This exercise was successfully conducted and the consultants gave out the results of the review. The MTR report highlighted various good practices within the network and gave recommendations that are meant to cement the good work being done by RATN.
Undertaken between September and November 2011, the MTR was called for by RATN to assess progress made by RATN Secretariat and its Member Institutions (MIs) in the implementation of the 2009-2014 Strategic Plan that was halfway at that time. According to the results of the MTR, RATN has made substantial progress towards meeting its objectives, and is already close to meeting some of its planned targets. Within the 2011/2012 financial year, several organisations expressed the desire to join the network and these are pure indicators of good work and reputation and positive signs of growth for the network. Since the first case of HIV was diagnosed in Africa, a lot of attention has revolved around the response to the pandemic and these efforts have borne many good things and brought positive changes. There is a lot of restrategising in HIV and AIDS world currently and organisations should adopt a change of strategy to remain relevant. The change of focus and strategies would definitely impact on organisations and networks. Whereas some organisations may be weakened in the process, others would come out even stronger. ‘What does not kill you makes you stronger’, goes a common saying. I believe that RATN will be the latter.
The RATN targets set out in the current strategic plan are well-tuned to the changes in the HIV and AIDS world. This is a good thing as it will ensure RATN is wellpositioned to achieve greater international recognition for results based capacity building initiatives.
My sincere appreciation goes to fellow Board Members who have tirelessly worked round the clock and invaluably contributed to RATN work during the past year. In the same breath, I would like to thank the visionary leadership provided by our Secretariat Management Team and the dedication, commitment and loyalty of RATN’s administrative and programme staff in the network. I do believe that if we maintain the same pace and work to build our network to become even stronger, then ‘A society with capacity to respond effectively to the HIV and AIDS pandemic’ is achievable.
Cecilia Rachier Board of Directors Regional AIDS Training Network
The efforts, commitment and continued support of core donors; CIDA and Sida, other sponsors, supporters and partners of the network have enabled us to achieve all the aforementioned activities.
…It is well known that what does not kill you makes you stronger. The change of focus and strategies means that many organisations and networks might suffer whereas others will come out even stronger. I believe that RATN will be the latter.
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In the context of the current environment, organisations that wish to remain relevant need to adapt their strategies to address broader interrelated issues of health. As RATN, we are ready for these changes and are now looking beyond HIV and AIDS. We have expanded our activities to include issues such as community systems strengthening (CSS) and gender mainstreaming. We have implemented risk reduction and disaster management strategies to ensure that capacity building efforts and gains are protected and sustainable. We are also tapping into local resource mobilisation initiatives. I am delighted that at RATN we have geared ourselves in this direction.
Executive Director’s Message
he year 2011/2012 was an exciting and successful year, to say the least! The success was largely dependent on our joint effort as a network and team work.
During the year, RATN undertook the development of a new results-based monitoring and evaluation framework and system aimed at ensuring that HIV training and capacity development are evidencebased and reflective of emerging trends and lessons learnt in line with the 2009-2014 Strategic Plan.
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Our training and capacity building work continued to grow thus the transformation of three projects supported by RATN’s INSTANT (Initiative for Strengthening HIV/ AIDS Networking and Training) grant-giving programme into regular courses. This is an indication of the demand for our courses in the region. In all, 486 participants were trained through 39 courses. Through INSTANT, Member Institutions implemented more than 40 capacity building projects in the region. RATN’s programmes continued to grow in leaps and bounds through the unveiling of a new
project, the Regional AIDS Training Network Alumni Grants (RAIG), an initiative that funds innovative projects by RATN Alumni. Comprehensive Results Based Management Capacity Building for HIV and AIDS Service Organisations (RECABASO), a fairly new project aimed at identifying and utilising best practices to address RBM capacity gaps among AIDS Service Organisations (ASOs) started bearing fruits. A team of RBM experts were trained to participate in the project while 17 ASOs in need of capacity building were identified and a detailed diagnosis of RBM capacity gaps conducted. RATN’s programmatic strength received recognition when a joint MSH and RATN bid for the USAID $44 million FANIKISHA project to be implemented in Kenya materialised. The five-year Cooperative Agreement is expected to build the capacity of national-level CSOs to ensure and sustain their contribution to the improvements in the health and well-being of all Kenyans. We expect that this joint venture will open more doors for RATN to partner and work with like-minded organisations in the region and beyond. The benefits offered by the RATN network continued to be seen in the number of organisations seeking to join the network even as RATN maintained strict criteria for membership recruitment. During the year, one organisation’s application to join the network was approved and ratified; three were approved pending ratification while two others were assessed and awaiting approval. The impact of the Capacity Building Summit held in March 2011 continued to be felt with the
In recognition of the importance of gender in the response to HIV and AIDS in the region, RATN undertook the development of a gender policy aimed at integrating gender issues into all RATN programmes. A Gender Working Group (GWG) whose mandate is to act as focal point for supporting the efforts of gender mainstreaming within RATN programmes was also constituted. In order to improve the ability of RATN MIs to replicate successes from one another, RATN unveiled the first in a planned series of Success Stories publications. The publications will draw attention to the role of capacity building in responding to the HIV and AIDS pandemic in the region. We express our sincere thanks to those who submitted articles for publication as we believe this sharing of best practices will contribute greatly to the improved performance of programmes. To ensure sustainability, RATN launched a Business Development Unit to lay a solid foundation for business development. The unit will ensure sustainability during the current strategic plan and beyond by developing and executing a resource mobilisation strategy that diversifies our current funding base.
The income for Secretariat was USD 2,348,290 during the financial year 2011/2012, a reduction of 16% in donor income over the 2010/2011 financial year. In spite of this reduction, 77 % of the expenditure still went to direct programme related costs enhancing the implementation of the strategic plan. Other incomes generated during the year were USD 190,045, a reduction by USD 35,775 (16%) from USD 225, 820 raised last year. This was due to the ending of the ABBA research project during the current financial year. Despite the economic crunch, our development partners have stood with us. However, to secure RATN’s future, we need to be proactive and broaden our basket. That being said, I believe that if we are nimble and creative we will find opportunity in the face of change and adversity to continue with the noble cause of building a society with capacity to effectively respond to the impact of HIV and AIDS in the region.
Kelvin Storey Regional AIDS Training Network
…I believe that if we are nimble and creative we will find opportunity in the face of change and adversity to continue with the noble cause of building a society with capacity to effectively respond to the impact of HIV and AIDS in the region…
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establishment of four Technical Working Groups to implement key recommendations from the Summit. And to keep the spirit of the Summit burning, RATN hosted a side event at the 16th ICASA 2011 conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, bringing together 25 HIV and AIDS capacity building partners to deliberate and chart the way forward in building capacity to effectively respond to HIV and AIDS.
Board of Directors
Ms. Cecilia Rachier
Kenya Association of Professional Counsellors
Mr. Dennis Mudede
CONNECT â€“ Zimbabwe Institute of Systemic Therapy
Vice Board Chair
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8 Dr. Maryanne Crockett University of Manitoba
Dr. Rangarirai Taruvinga
Mananga Centre for RegionalIntegration & Management Development
Chair, Finance and Administration
Mr. Zachary Bigirimana Kigali Health Institute
Chair, Programmes Committee
Dr. Erastus Njeru
Clinical Epidemiology Unit, University of Nairobi
Mr. Jonathan Spangler
Centre for African Family Studies
Prof. Walter Jaoko University of Nairobi
Mrs. Noreen M Huni
Regional Psycho-Social Support Initiative
Regional AIDS Training Network
During the period under review, RATN trained 486 participants through 39 courses. The courses delivered in the year also included two new courses aimed at building capacity of health workers to integrate multiple health services into HIV programming. The courses integrate TB and Family Planning/Reproductive Health and HIV. During the year, RATN developed a Quality Assurance system for training and capacity building to ensure that RATN training courses meet threshold standards in terms of quality and relevance. RATN also designed a pilot small grants project, Regional AIDS Training Network Alumni Grants (RAIG) which will enable Alumni to implement innovative ideas they would otherwise not have implemented due to lack of facilitation from their organisations. Formal and informal evaluations of MI capacity needs conducted during the review year identified some institutional strengthening gaps required by MIs such as Quality Assurance and performance improvement for RATN training programmes.
Due to demand in the region, three courses were identified and transformed from the Initiative for Strengthening HIV/AIDS Networking and Training (INSTANT), a small grants programme, into regular courses and their curricula enhanced. RATN also supported its Member Institutions through INSTANT to implement more than 40 capacity building projects in the ESA region. RATN’s network continued to grow with the approval and ratification of South Africa’s SAfAIDS as full member. Other institutions approved to join the network pending ratification were, Kenya AIDS Vaccine Initiative (KAVI), Soul City and Institute of Health Programs and Systems (IHPS) Organisations. Two other organisations-HIPo Africa and UNHCO--were assessed and awaiting approval. RATN’s new entrant into the network SAfAIDS, was given support to develop a Documentation and Communication course. Zimbabwe Open University also came up with and accredited new courses; a Masters Programme and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Community Counseling with a special focus on HIV and Disability. Malawi College of Health Sciences was supported to develop an HIV Testing and Statistical Quality Control course curriculum. During the year under review, discussions were held with the University of Nairobi’s Clinical Epidemiology Unit to offer an accredited synchronised e-learning course which led to the development of a post graduate diploma course outline.
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his report summarises the annual programme and Financial Year for the period 1st April 2011 to 31st March 2012 (FY2011/2012). It provides an overview of the performance of the Regional AIDS Training Network (RATN) during FY3 of its 2009-2014 strategic plan implementation period. The report provides insights into the implementation of the five strategic objectives of RATN and highlights key achievements, challenges encountered and lessons learned during the period under review.
Comprehensive Results Based Management Capacity Building for HIV and AIDS Service Organisations (RECABASO), a RATN programme, aimed at identifying and utilising best practices to address RBM capacity gaps among organisations implementing HIV programmes in Eastern and Southern Africa. The programme formed and trained a team of RBM experts to participate in the project. Seventeen AIDS Service Organisations (ASOs) in need of capacity building were identified and a detailed diagnosis of RBM capacity gaps conducted.
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During the year under review, RATN undertook the development of a new resultsbased monitoring and evaluation framework and system aimed at ensuring that HIV training and capacity development are evidence-based and reflective of emerging trends and lessons learnt. The roll out process for the framework started with orientation on the framework to all RATN MIs. With the support of CIDA, RATN commenced development of a gender policy aimed at integrating gender issues into the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of operations, policies, plans, programmes, activities and projects as well as incorporating gender-responsive indicators in the RATN monitoring and evaluation framework. A Gender Working Group (GWG) whose mandate is to act as focal point for supporting the efforts of gender mainstreaming within RATN training and capacity development initiatives was also constituted. RATN also completed the development of a comprehensive results-based monitoring and evaluation framework which includes a mix of input indicators that reveal the extent to which any RATN activity addresses the different needs and constraints of women and men. This information will feed into programmes on a continual basis to improve implementation and maximise efficacy and efficiency of RATN programmes.
During the year, RATN partnered with Management Sciences for Health (MSH), PACT Inc. and Danya International to implement the FANIKISHA Institutional Strengthening project, a USD 44 million five-year Cooperative Agreement funded by USAID/Kenya. FANIKISHA will build the capacity of national-level CSOs to ensure and sustain their contribution to the improvements in the health sector in Kenya. Following the successful coordination of the March 2011 HIV Capacity Partners Summit held in Nairobi, four Technical Working Groups were established to implement key recommendations from the Summit. A Mid Term Review (MTR) of the current strategic plan was carried out during the period under review to assess the progress made by RATN Secretariat and its member institutions in implementing its 2009-2014 Strategic Plansâ€™ objectives. In financial matters, there was a 16 % reduction in donor income over the year under review. In spite of this, 77 % of the expenditure still went to direct programme related costs enhancing implementation of efforts towards reduction of the prevalence of STI/HIV/AIDS and mitigation on the impact of the epidemic on communities in the Eastern and Southern African region.
Description and Mandate of RATN
he Regional AIDS Training Network (RATN) was founded in 1997 as a network consisting of partner training institutions in Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA) to collaborate on training activities related to STIs/HIV/AIDS in the region. RATN’s status changed in April 2003 from being a project to a regional Non Governmental Organisation with its secretariat in Nairobi, Kenya. The expected long-term impact of RATN’s work is a reduction of the prevalence of STI/HIV/ AIDS and mitigation of the impact of the epidemic on communities in the ESA region. The strategic goal of the RATN strategic plan (2009-2014) is “To strengthen the capacity of individuals and institutions in the Eastern and Southern Africa region to effectively respond to the HIV and AIDS pandemic through training and capacity, development, information sharing and advocacy.”
• Facilitate strengthening of capacity for training institutions (under RATN Membership) to develop and deliver training and/or manage quality gender sensitive HIV and AIDS prevention, care support, and mitigation programmes; • Facilitate knowledge and information exchange on HIV and AIDS training and capacity development (enabling RATN to become a recognised authority in high quality HIV and AIDS information related to training); • Facilitate strengthening of advocacy by building the capacity of RATN MIs, civil society and other partners to influence policy that increases support for developing effective capacity to respond to the HIV and AIDS pandemic in the ESA region; • Facilitate the strengthening of RATN as fully functional and sustainable regional membership-based network organisation and; • Strengthen the Monitoring and Evaluation system of RATN and its members.
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To achieve its purpose, RATN has the following specific strategic objectives: • Facilitate development of skills and competencies for design and implementation of effective HIV and AIDS interventions at the community and workplace;
What We Do RATN 2011 - 2012 | ANNUAL REPORT |
RATN functions as a catalyst and facilitator to strengthen the HIV and AIDS curriculum development and training capacities of member training institutions and individuals. It also functions as a forum for the exchange of ideas and experiences.
Where We Work: RATN is the only indigenous membership-based organisation with a regional mandate to address HIV and AIDS related training and capacity development issues and needs. RATNâ€™s regional mandate spreads across the Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA) region in 11 countries namely Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, Rwanda, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Swaziland, Botswana and South Africa and Kenya (where its secretariat is based).
Our Approach RATN has a unique model for HIV training and capacity development. Our uniqueness lies in the principle of networking multiple capacity building institutions to tackle systemic barriers to training and capacity gaps. Our approach allows for cross fertilisation of best practices and tools for effective HIV training and capacity building.
Our Strength Systemic barriers hinder a coherent and effective response to HIV and AIDS- related human resource, training and capacity gaps in the ESA region. The issues of training and capacity building are too complex and broad for any one organisation to address individually. RATN, through its diverse membership of 31 full members and three associate members drawn from International and National NGOs, Management Institutions and University Departments, mobilises support from a wide range of stakeholders-including civil society, private sector, governments and, multilaterals- to lobby and advocate for needed change in policies and practices.
Our Vision â€œA Society with the capacity to respond effectively to the HIV and AIDS pandemicâ€?
Our Values Tolerance to diversity Equity and Fairness Mutual Respect Honesty and Integrity Transparency and Accountability Zero tolerance to all forms of corruption Learning from our past experiences and practices Involvement of people infected and affected by HIV
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To strengthen the capacity of relevant individuals, organisations and other stakeholders to respond to STIs/HIV/AIDS in the Eastern and Southern Africa region
RATN Expected Outcomes The expected long-term impact of RATNâ€™s work is: a reduction of the prevalence of STI/HIV/AIDS and mitigation on the impact of the epidemic on communities in the region. Within the current Strategic Plan, there are four outcomes stated. However, RATN undertook the development of a comprehensive, Result-Based Management-focused Monitoring and Evaluation Framework and System to provide a means of checking, determining and keeping track of progress during the implementation of the remaining part of the Strategic Plan. The new framework outlines five outcomes, or expected results. These expected results are represented in Figure 1 below:-
Figure1: Summary of RATN goals and programme result areas 1. Goal: To strengthen the capacity of individuals and institutions in the Eastern and Southern Africa Region to effectively respond to the HIV and AIDS pandemic through training and capacity development, information sharing and advocacy.
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1.1 Capacity of HIV/ AIDS programmes trainers and institutions enhanced
1.2 Enabling policy environment for capacity building improved
1.4 Information and knowledge management systems improved
Increased access to RATN sponsored courses
Effectiveness of RATNMI Network increased
Increased access to relevant information
Quality of RATN sponsored courses improved
Increased effectiveness of RATN partnerships
Improved quality of information exchanged
RATN participation in regional capacity building policy dialogue increased
Increased efficiency of information exchange
Efficiency of delivery of sponsored courses enhanced New and more effective capacity building strategies developed
1.5 Improved functionality of the network
1.3 Evidence based programming increased
Increased MI ownership of RATN mandate
RATN monitoring data systems improved
Institutional and technical capacity of MIs built Increased technical and management capacity of RATN Secretariat Improved relevance, image and visibility of the network
RATN evaluation function enhanced More responsive RATN research agenda
Training and Capacity Development
As the demand for quality human resources skills continues to outstrip the capability of many organisations responsible for HIV responses, RATN has doubled its effort in the implementation of training and capacity development by scaling up programmes focusing on new and emerging issues within HIV prevention and other co-infections as well as strengthening institutional systems.
RATN in collaboration with its MIs targeted to train 600 participants through 40 regular collaborative courses for the year 2011/2012. RATN trained 486 participants through 39 courses. This shows that 81 per cent of the annual target was reached through delivery of 98 percent of the courses. Out of the 486 participants trained, eight percent (37) participated in trainings specifically targeted to marginalised groups and three percent (12) attended courses specifically targeting gender. Forty nine percent of the participants attended the treatment care and support courses. Table 1: Gender Breakdown of RATN Course Participants by Thematic Area Male Female Impact Mitigation
Institutional Development Prevention
Treatment Care and Support Total
Addressing changing needs In order to address the changing needs in the HIV and AIDS sector, RATN identified and delivered two new courses namely Tuberculosis(TB)/HIV and Family Planning/ Reproductive Health (FP/RH) and HIV. The two integrates TB and FP/RH and HIV into HIV programming with the aim of building capacity of health workers to integrate multiple health services into HIV programming. The TB/HIV and FP/RH and HIV courses were conducted by the Infectious Diseases Institute in Uganda (IDI) and Centre for African Family Studies (CAFS) respectively. Four other courses, Laboratory
Management offered by Mildmay Uganda, Gender and HIV by IDM, HIV Counselling and Testing for the Hearing Impaired courses by KAPC and the Child Counseling course by TASO, were reviewed and repackaged into modular formats. The KAPC Counseling course was realigned to the NASCOP accreditation system and TASO’s Child Counseling course was repackaged to realign it to current and emerging needs for improved relevance.
Meeting training demand through new courses Due to demand in the ESA region, three courses, namely Monitoring and Evaluation for HIV Programming by MANANGA, Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health course by TASO and Monitoring and Evaluation for Programme Managers by CHAZ, were identified and transformed from INSTANT projects courses into regular courses. Their curricula were also enhanced. The M&E course for HIV Programming and the Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health course for TASO are already being offered whereas the Monitoring and Evaluation for Programme Managers will be rolled out soon. RATN’s new entrant into the network SAfAIDS was also given support to develop a Documentation and Communication Course, Liverpool VCT was supported to develop a Quality Management Course and IDI was supported to develop a new course on TB/HIV integrati on. Other new courses developed were Zimbabwe Open University’s Masters Programme and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Community Counseling with a special focus on HIV and Disability. Malawi College of Health Sciences was assisted to develop an HIV Testing and Statistical Quality Control course curriculum.
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Delivery of collaborative training courses
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Orienting MIs on RATN’s Monitoring and Evaluation System
To ensure that RATN training courses meet threshold standards in terms of quality and relevance, RATN commissioned consultants from Wits University, South Africa in 2011 to develop a Quality Assurance (QA) system for the training and capacity development programme. The QA system, which is now ready, will strengthen beneficiary confidence and augment the credibility of RATN Training and Capacity Development Programmes. The QA system is a critical milestone in the process of accrediting RATN courses. The system will form a critical input into the process of accrediting RATN courses and provide RATN and its MIs with a tool to assess compliance to standards in the delivery of RATN courses. It will also help to strengthen the training programmes’ outcomes by minimising biases in quality.
RATN’s Monitoring and Evaluation System (RTMES) is a system that was developed to monitor and evaluate the RATN training system. It has a set of 10 tools that monitor inputs, process, and outcomes of the courses. In order to strengthen course and Alumni follow-up, six MIs namely LVCT, CAFS, CHAZ, ZOU, Mildmay, and IDI were oriented on the use of the RTMES. Other MIs re-oriented during RATN onsite support visits and curriculum review meetings included IDM Botswana, Lesotho, Swaziland, KAPC, TASO and AIC.
The QA system comes at a time when RATN’s critical role in training and as a technical resource network is becoming more and more recognised in the region hence the need to accredit RATN collaborative courses through recognised institutions. To that end, RATN supported its MIs in repackaging and realigning courses to meet set standards for accreditation criteria expected by RATN Member Institutions. Thirteen courses were accredited and nine others are in the process of accreditation. KAPC’s Counselors and HIV Counseling and Testing for the Hearing Impaired course was reviewed and re-aligned to Kenya’s NASCOP accreditation procedures. The gender course conducted at IDM Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland was also re-aligned to suit the Botswana Training Authority accrediting authority guidelines.
Providing opportunities to implement acquired skills An online tool for a new RATN Volunteer Programme was designed and shared with alumni during the period under review to find out alumni willingness and availability to provide services to ASOs in various fields of institutional strengthening. To that end, a pilot project to give RATN Alumni opportunity to implement skills acquired during training was designed. The small grants project, Regional AIDS Training Networking Alumni Grants (RAIG) offers between USD 5,000 and USD 8,000 to enable Alumni to implement innovative ideas they would otherwise not have been implemented due to lack of facilitation from their organisations. RAIG ensures that the knowledge and skills alumni acquire during their training do not go to waste.
Reviewing MI capacity needs RATN conducted formal and informal evaluations of MI capacity needs during the review year. These efforts identified quality assurance and performance improvement for RATN training programmes, result based monitoring and evaluation for training and capacity development programmes and gender mainstreaming as some institutional strengthening gaps required by MIs. One example of institutional strengthening provided was offered by Kenya Association of Professional Counselors trainers in sign language for the HIV and AIDS Hearing Impaired course.
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Improving courses credibility through Quality Assurance system
Responding to the HIV and AIDS pandemic through training Demand for quality human resource for effective HIV response calls for quality training. RATN collaborates with its MIs to offer training in four main thematic areas; HIV prevention, Treatment Care and Support, Impact Mitigation and Institutional Development.
HIV Prevention Courses HIV prevention refers to practices and methods that are used to curb the spread of the HIV virus. These activities can be done by individuals on their own to protect themselves from the virus and or to protect the health of the people around them. These activities may be instituted by organisations, groups of individuals, or governments through the public institutions. HIV prevention courses offered by RATN and its member institutions seek to ensure proper adoption and use of HIV prevention strategies (including, among others, condom use, circumcision, prevention of mother to child transmission, behaviour change communication and safe sex practice) towards proper response to HIV pandemic.
Health workers empowered to handle HIV care
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When Collins Wanyama was invited to take part in a community care course, he knew that his dream had come true because for a long time he had been implementing HIV care in his community without proper skills. Wanyama, a resident of Buikwe district in Eastern Uganda, says that when The AIDS Support Organization (TASO) through the sponsorship of Regional AIDS Training Network (RATN) enrolled him for the community care in HIV/AIDS Course at TASO he thought it was just another HIV and AIDS course to enable him improve his skills. But when Wanyama enrolled, he discovered it was much more. “Before the training, I had little knowledge in HIV and AIDS, counseling, prevention, mitigation, care and support. The selection of facilitators and course contents suited my area of work as a counselor,” says Wanyama adding, “The course has improved my skills because I now go to the communities with skills and I am able to handle more complex situations.” Hala Bakika, who works with Sudanese National AIDS Control Program is another beneficiary of the TASO/RATN collaboration. Bakika who travelled from Sudan to Uganda to attend the training at TASO says that
the training improved her monitoring and evaluation skills. “I have also learnt communication skills and how to conduct myself during community visits,” she says. Edward Mashati a participant from Kenya says that the training has taught him how to deal with stigma towards people living with HIV/ AIDS. He urges RATN and TASO to spread their trainings to include primary and secondary school teachers so that they may acquire skills in counseling and communications to enable them to handle students infected and affected by the disease and also reduce stigmatization by teachers which often lead to increased school dropouts. According to Juliana Nyombi, TASO’s Director for Capacity Development, RATN value lies in the principle of networking several capacity building institutions to have a systematic bearers to address training and capacity development gaps. “TASO staff have benefited from RATN training in sharing of best practice and tools for effective training and capacity building in HIV/AIDS as well as raising awareness on challenges faced by HIV capacity building of institutions in the delivery of quality interventions,” says Juliana.
HIV Treatment, Care and Support Courses RATN’s HIV Care and Treatment courses promote access to and success in HIV treatment for people with HIV/AIDS. Courses range from case management, access to important supportive services to caring for people living with HIV/AIDS and empowering them to effectively manage their HIV disease and improve their overall health and quality of life.
Cleric counsels to save country from HIV and AIDS
However, the dawn of the new millennium marked a change in political attitude and determination to confront the epidemic. The Zambian Government stepped up the fight against HIV and AIDS leading to the birth of the National AIDS Council (NAC) in 2002. Unfortunately, the impact of AIDS had gone far beyond the household and community level leading to high mortality rates. But the government was not ready to give up. In 2005, the National AIDS Council in Zambia called for mandatory HIV and AIDS counseling in a move to control the epidemic. This move did not go well with human rights activists leading to the Government softening its stand and stating that it would encourage voluntary counseling and testing. While all this was happening, one man was watching keenly and trying to figure out how he could help. Rev. Collins Kavuka, a counselor at World Vision’s Corridors of Hope (a commercial sex worker rehabilitation programme) looked at the HIV and AIDS prevention strategies visà-vis the high mortality rate and realized counseling had a big role to play. As if someone had read his mind, an opportunity arose to attend a course
in Programme Management and Administration in HIV and AIDS at Malawi Institute of Management in 2006, and Rev. Kavuka was given a sponsorship from the Regional AIDS Training Network (RATN). “Since I already had a passion for counseling and wanted to play my part and reduce the high mortality rate in Zambia, I knew that was my chance to get the required skills in counseling,” says Kavuka, who is now an HIV and AIDS Development Facilitator at World Vision Zambia. After attending the first training, he realized he needed to expand his technical approaches in counseling and enrolled for a Higher Diploma in counseling at Kenya Association of Professional Counselors (KAPC) based in Nairobi. “RATN has played a big role in my success and this success has helped me serve my people, says Kavuka, who is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Counseling Training at KAPC. “The courses I have attended so far have enabled me to put in quality services to my organization and my clients,” says Kavuka, adding, “The trainings have capacity built me to the level where I can manage HIV and AIDS project at World Vision.” With the increased VCT centers in Zambia manned by qualified health workers like Kavuka, there is renewed hope for Zambians to know their status and act to protect themselves and those around them from HIV and AIDS.
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Zambia’s first AIDS case was reported in 1984. Unfortunately, like many other African countries, the early stage of the epidemic was kept secret by the authorities. As this was happening, the number of HIV and AIDS infections continued to rise.
Impact Mitigation Courses HIV infection impacts greatly the people affected. These impacts need to be properly managed to ensure quality of life for PLHIV. RATN offers courses that target HIV impact mitigation to ensure that the response is effective and efficient. Impact mitigation courses target those interventions that are geared towards ensuring HIV impacts are well contained.
Monitoring and Evaluation training moves health worker to new heights Getting training on monitoring and evaluation has helped Khanyisile Mamba, the chairperson for Positive Women Living Together with HIV/ AIDS, to grow the organisation to greater heights. A year after participating in a week-long monitoring and evaluation course at Mananga Centre for Regional Excellence in Swaziland, Mamba says she has a clearer vision of the organisation which is helping many women living with HIV/AIDS in rural communities cope with ease.
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“We used to implement projects and move on without monitoring and going back to evaluate whether we got the desired results,” said Mamba. “That’s why in some instances organisations working on HIV/AIDS have not achieved the desired impact.” Before undergoing this training, she said, she never used to appreciate the importance of compiling a report and revisiting the objectives. She is also the programme manager at the Alliance of Mayors Initiative for Community Action on AIDS at the Local Level (AMICAAL), where she is also applying the knowledge she got from the training to write proposals. Here too, Khanyisile is seeing a better impact on projects the organisation is implementing within the communities around Ezulwini communities. Together with 16 other participants from different organisations working on HIV/AIDS, Mamba was sponsored by the Regional AIDS Training Network (RATN) to undergo the training on monitoring and evaluation. “It was also a networking opportunity because I got to meet a lot of people working in the same field,” said Mamba. “It was the first time for me or anyone from my organisation to get training on monitoring
and evaluation,” said Mamba. “I wish there were many more trainings of this nature in the country.” RATN collaborates with two training institutions in Swaziland; Institute of Development Management (IDM) and Mananga Centre for Regional Excellence. Mamba was impressed with the design of the programme. “I need to emphasise that there is need for more M&E trainings because a lot of organisations are making the same mistake of implementing projects without caring to find out whether they are having an impact or not,” said Mamba. As a small organisation working with HIVpositive women in rural communities in the Kingdom, Mamba said the M&E course came at the right time because there is still a lot of work that needs to be done in advancing the course of people living with HIV/AIDS in the country. Besides facilitating the formation of support groups for women living with HIV/AIDS, the organisation is also establishing gardens as income-generation projects for its affiliates across three communities. “Many women are poor and that increases their risk of re-infection because they fail to bargain for safer sex with their partners who tend to have the financial muscle,” said Mamba. Although she is trying to share with the rest of her colleagues what she has learnt at the workshop, she feels there is a serious need to train more people in monitoring and evaluation, especially those working on HIV/ AIDS. “It’s important to also train community leaders because these are the people who play a pivotal role in enforcing the cultures that women have to undergo yet some of them perpetuate HIV/AIDS,” said Mamba.
Institutional Development Courses HIV prevention, treatment care and support and impact mitigation services are often offered simultaneously from the same institutions. This breadth of service offerings demands that institutions be ready and well capacitated for effective service provision. However, most institutions lack the capacity to respond effectively. Institutional Development Courses seek to ensure that institutions have the highest level capacity to deliver effective HIV response services. In collaboration with its Member Institutions, RATN offers courses and trainings that seek to improve on institutional HIV response capacity.
HIV and AIDS Management Course catapult medic to managerial position
When he joined Matibabu as a trained medic, Dr Okango’s was only concerned with seeing patients and giving them prescriptions to enable them feel better. When Matibabu was awarded funds by USAID’s PEPFAR project, little did he know that the funding would shape his career. With the funding, the organisation needed someone to spearhead the PEPFAR project and that person was Dr Okango. Unfortunately, as a medic, he had no project management skills. “I had been working as a medical doctor and knew nothing as far as running programmes was concerned. I had no idea on how to plan, monitor or even evaluate a programme. Worse still, I had never managed people and this was going to be my greatest challenge,” says Dr.Okango. With the PEPFAR funding and work waiting to be done, he had no option but to enrol for an HIV and AIDS Project Management and Administration course at Eastern and Southern Africa Management Institute (ESAMI) in Arusha, Tanzania in 2008. “After the one month RATN sponsored course at EASAMI, I got a certificate and I had to go back to practice what I had learned. I can confidently say that the training has been the foundation on which I have been able to
spearhead the project director’s docket and which has led to the growth of Matibabu. “Before attending the course I had never learnt to appreciate the value of project management. I never even imagined being at the helm of a project and tasked with its success,” says Okango, who has been confidently implementing what he learnt thus transforming the organisation tremendously. Matibabu Foundation used to attend to about 5,000 patients in a year but this has since increased to over 30, 000 a year. This, according to Dr.Okango, demanded managerial skills to manage the growth. “When the project funding was coming to an end in July 2011, the programme was given a cost extension because of the good work,” adds Dr Okango. With the growth Matibabu has attracted various partners and thus has subdivided its programmes for effective management, monitoring and evaluation thanks to the skills Dr Okango gained from the training. “The training was an all inclusive as I was able to learn about critical issues that makes project succeed such as Project Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation and the need for Partnership and Networking not to mention how to motivate staff to ensure teamwork towards achieving different goals,” says Dr.Okango. According to Dr.Okango, the training would not have given him enough skills if not for the facilitators who were always available to consult during and after the sessions. “We were able to consult them past the classrooms,” he says.
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Four years after attending the HIV and AIDS Programme Management and Administration course, Dr. Fredrick Okango is the man spearheading the Health Services and Programmes docket at Matibabu Foundation, an indigenous community health care initiative found in western Kenya, founded in 2006.
Networking and Partnerships Development
Regional AIDS Training Network (RATN) Member Institutions (MIs) and other institutions in countries where RATN operates are uniquely placed to influence policies that will increase support towards training and capacity development for HIV response.
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However, due to the lack of the technical capacity and skills needed to effectively respond to, and advocate for these issues, there is a clear role for RATN in strengthening the capacity of RATN MIs, civil society organisations and other partners to influence policies in favour of increasing support for capacity development for HIV response. Through its advocacy, networking and partnership programme area, RATN has stepped up its activities towards expa nding the network strategically to ensure effective HIV response in the ESA region and beyond. RATN advocacy efforts focused on influencing the coordinated scale-up of quality HIV training and capacity development at both the national and regional level in order to achieve improved programming in HIV and AIDS and realising the Universal Access targets and MDGs.
Increasing Network Membership
Advancing advocacy efforts
During the period under review, RATN recruited one full member, SAfAIDS, bringing the total number of full MIs to 30. SAfAIDS has commenced with some collaborative projects within the network. It is expected that more MIs will be strategically recruited by the end of the next financial year. The Board approved membership application of three organisations namely Institute of Health Programs and Systems (IHPS) – South Africa, Kenya AIDS Vaccine Initiative (KAVI), and Soul City – South Africa during the period under review. The applications are awaiting ratification by the General Council in June 2012. In addition, UNHCO, an associate member and HIPo Africa were assessed for RATN membership. The assessment reports for Uganda National Health Consumers Organisation (UNHCO) and HIPo will be presented to the Board in June 2012 for consideration.
RATN enhanced and strengthened partnerships with regional and national HIV and AIDS institutions in the region by initiating discussion with the Kenya National AIDS Control Council and the East African Community to determine opportunities for partnership and engagement. RATN was also invited to join the SADC subcommittee on capacity building and participated in several teleconference meetings to review and map capacity building initiatives in the SADC region. RATN continued to actively participate in strategic, regional and international HIV Capacity Building and related forums such as EAC, SADC, RAANGO and the Strategic Dialogue meeting between Civil Society, International Cooperating Partners and the United Nations intended to strengthen regional response to HIV through enhanced coordination and partnerships
Implementing INSTANT projects
Participation in regional forums
The Initiative for Strengthening HIV/AIDS Networking and Training (INSTANT) projects launched in 2009 purposed to catalyse the involvement of RATN MIs and to ensure a stronger network has bore a lot of fruits. The year 2011/2012 saw RATN implement the Round three of INSTANT programme. This specifically helped RATN identify and build capacity of MIs in proposal development, research and results based management. RATN conducted a proposal writing skills workshop for all MIs in August 2011 to further capacitate MIs. Some of the INSTANT projects were transformed into courses hence increasing participation and involvement of the MIs. The INSTANT projects progress follow up that was initiated in the last financial year also continued to be done by the focal persons and update reports shared at regular interval. MIs were provided with feedback on all the project reports that were submitted to the Secretariat.
RATN continued to actively participate in strategic, regional and international HIV Capacity Building and related forums. RATN hosted a side event “Forging Ahead” at the 16th ICASA 2011 conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Informed by the need to follow up on the work being done by the Technical Working Groups (TWG) formed after the HIV Capacity Building Partners Summit, this initiative brought together 25 HIV and AIDS capacity building partners to deliberate and determine the way forward in building capacity to effectively respond to HIV and AIDS. RATN also presented three papers at the ICASA conference. RATN’s presence in Ethiopia presented further opportunities for networking and partnerships.
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Knowledge and Information Management
Accurate and timely communication of information is critical to knowledge building as well as empowerment of individuals and organisations working in the area of HIV and AIDS. RATN continued to create opportunities and platforms to support Member institutions and other strategic partners to engage and share information on HIV and AIDS to enable them to provide prevention, treatment, care, support and mitigation effectively.
The knowledge and skills possessed by RATN MIs that influence public and civil society policy and programming to promote the effective capacity development for HIV response needs to be significantly shared among a broader group of stakeholders at all levels. Best practices and success stories identified at local and national levels also need to be shared across the region for replication. A publication on Successes in capacity building for HIV and AIDS response was launched and the first series booklet produced during the period under review. Seven success stories were collected and have been compiled into a booklet. The booklet contains success stories in capacity building that can be shared, replicated and applied to scale up the role of capacity building in responding to the HIV and AIDS pandemic in the ESA region.
Upgrading RATN website In its quest to improve knowledge management and systems, RATN improved its website during the period under review among other initiatives to make it user friendly. The website has become the cornerstone for linking RATN MIs and the secretariat as well as RATN stakeholders and beneficiaries. Since August 2010 the website has had 73,088 visits and 4,430,759 hits. The number of hits from April 2011 to March 2012 was 3,015,856. The number of people visiting the website has been on the increase over time. RATN also established website links with 18 MIs. A number of documents have been downloaded frequently
since they were uploaded. For example, the 2012 training prospectus was downloaded 399 times between 17th January and 29th February 2012 and the RATN 2010/2011 annual report was downloaded 297 times between 8th August 2011 and 29th February 2012.
Revamping the Training and Information Hub (HIT) The training and information hub (HIT) was developed to address the demand for information on training resources in the region. During the year, RATN commenced creating a sub domain to separate HIT from the RATN website and give it its own identity. Once completed, HIT is expected to stand out as a one stop shop holding information on STI/HIV and AIDS for frontline health workers.
Disseminating stories of change RATN continued to facilitate the implementation of the media focal point project and disseminate stories of change in relation to HIV training and capacity building. During the period under review, RATN recruited and oriented three (3) journalists bringing the total number of journalists to nine and increasing coverage to nine countries. The pool of journalists under the media focal point project in addition to gathering stories of change in relation to HIV training, will also gather success stories to enrich the success stories series booklet.
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Sharing success stories
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Research, Monitoring and Evaluation
The Regional AIDS Training Network aims at ensuring that HIV training and capacity development programmes in the region are evidence-based and reflective of emerging trends and lessons learnt. It does this by strengthening mechanisms to effectively research for, monitor and evaluate training and capacity development interventions for impact and effectiveness.
The Mid Term Review (MTR) of the current RATN strategic plan (2009-2014) was carried out during the period under review to assess the progress made by the RATN Secretariat and its Member Institutions in the implementing the Strategic Plan. The MTR found out that RATN had made substantial progress towards meeting its objectives, and was close to meeting some of the plan targets even at the half way stage of its strategic plan. Among recommendations made to inform the remaining two years of implementation was the need to identify and respond to emerging issues and challenges in HIV and AIDS arena, develop appropriate training and capacity building responses and explore opportunities for new partnerships with other AIDS networks in other parts of Africa other than Eastern and Southern Africa region. The MTR recommendations and lessons will help shape the implementation of the remaining part of the strategic plan.
Evaluating Special Projects to meet targets The Initiative for Strengthening HIV/AIDS Networking & Training (INSTANT) is among the new RATN projects that have been on a pilot phase for the last two years. An evaluation of Round One INSTANT projects was carried out and the findings and recommendations disseminated to MIs during two proposal writing workshops held in Kenya and South Africa. Whereas the evaluation provided learning lessons to help improve subsequent rounds, the recommendations pinpointed the need for
MIs to share their experiences and best practices generated out of the projects to generate substantial capacity to build multiplier effects. Other recommendations included MIs taking advantage of the network to benefit from MI to MI mentoring during conceptualisation, design and implementation of the projects.
Targeting People with Special Needs RATN has in the last five years been engaged in Addressing the Balance and Burden in HIV/AIDS (ABBA) RPC, research project funded by DFID. Other members of the team are Population Council-NY, HEARD â€“SA, REACH Trust Malawi and Health Research Unit, Ghana. The research, carried out in parts of Eastern, Western and Southern Africa, is aimed at generating evidence that will help policy makers address the balance in burden of HIV and AIDS among vulnerable populations in Africa. The findings of the project are expected to be used by stakeholders to improve HIV and AIDS programming as well as point to other possible opportunities for further research. As part of the ABBA communication strategy, one case study was developed from the research and submitted to DFID for publication. RATNâ€™s mandate in the project was to look at Persons with Disabilities and HIV and AIDS and Health Related Quality of Life PLHIV on ART. So far, RATN has conducted seven PWD studies (six in Kenya and one in Ethiopia) and one HRQoL study in Kenya. Findings from three of the studies were presented at the University of Nairobi Annual Collaborative meeting in January
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Reviewing RATN Strategic Plan
Enabling deaf persons to access VCT services In Kenya, as in many other developing countries, people with disabilities (PWDs) experience barriers to accessing information and health services such as HIV testing and counseling due to restrictive cultural norms, stigma and prejudice in their communities
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To address this problem, Kenya Association of Professional Counselors (KAPC) with support from RATN’s INSTANT Initiative, implemented a project to address the challenges encountered by the deaf and hearing impaired in accessing HIV and AIDS services. The six month project targeting five low income neighbourhoods in Kenya’s capital Nairobi also aimed at advocating for the deaf and hearing impaired to enjoy their health rights “Most deaf people are reluctant to seek VCT services as there are no deaf post test and support groups,” says KAPC Training Officer, Daniel Ochieng. Ten deaf HIV Testing and Counseling counselors identified to take part in the project were trained in basic sign language and interpretation. A VCT centre set up attracted 4,187 people. Of the total number of people who were tested, 432 (10.3 per cent) were deaf, 12 of whom tested positive “Deaf people believe that there is no confidentiality when they go to VCT so some opt to keep away,” says 39 year-old Peter Ondiege, one of the people who attended the course
2011. The studies were Responsiveness of ART to the Needs of Persons with Disability in Kenya, HIV Policy Advocacy Research for Persons with Disability and HIV/AIDS and Life Skills Training and Development for Children with Disabilities. RATN also presented a paper on Different Approach to HIV/AIDS Programming: Using Disabled People’s Organisations was also presented at the UoN annual collaborative meeting (27th January 2012). One of the key findings in the studies is the unmet need for HIV and AIDS interventions for Persons with disabilities, and that the current HIV policies and programmes are not disability inclusive.
Assessing the role of traditional practitioners in addressing HIV and AIDS In collaboration with Uganda’s HIPo Africa, RATN conducted a research study commissioned by Help Age International and funded by Sida. The study aimed at assessing the role of traditional health practitioners and traditional leaders in addressing HIV and AIDS for older persons in four countries namely Ethiopia, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. The study, which was finalised in September 2011, shows that most elderly persons seek services from traditional practitioners. Yet there is a capacity gap in the provision of HIV and AIDS services for older persons by the traditional health practitioners. The study which will inform the design and delivery of relevant training and capacity building interventions aimed at enhancing the role of traditional health practitioners and traditional leaders in HIV response and in relation to the delivery of HIV and AIDS services for older persons also pointed out the need to strengthen the collaboration of the traditional health practitioners and the biomedical health practitioners so as to enhance the services provided to older persons.
Aligning programmes to RATN’s2009-2014 Strategic Plan RATN undertook the development of a new results-based monitoring and evaluation framework and system aimed at ensuring that HIV training and capacity development are evidence-based and reflective of emerging trends and lessons learnt. The new system, which involved MIs in its design, will provide the network with a means of checking, determining and keeping track of progress during the implementation of the remaining part of the current Strategic Plan. The Performance Monitoring Framework (PMF) of RATN was reviewed and aligned to RBM as part of the development of the monitoring and evaluation framework. The roll out process for the framework started with orientation on the framework to all RATN staff.
Following up RATN Alumni In line with the RATN’s 2009-2014 Strategic Plan, RATN conducted a post-training survey to assess alumni satisfaction and the general impact of the trainings they have attended. The follow-up was conducted on 30 alumni (seven male and 23 female) from nine courses held between April 2009 and March 2012. Those interviewed indicated that they had used the skills gained by introducing them at their work places and even recommended the courses to other people. The results of the survey will be shared with the respective MIs and in future scaled up and conducted annually with a view to capture impact and utilise the results in course improvement and delivery
One female alumni had this to say: “My counselling skills have improved and I have been promoted at my place of work to head the Guidance and Counselling unit” – Alumni who attended a counselling course at Kenya Association of Professional Counsellors, Kenya
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Grants and Business Development
RATN is dedicated to building a powerful network to support the capacity development of organizations, health workers, government officials and other stakeholders in the battle against HIV and AIDS. To this end, the Grants and Business Development division was established in November 2011 to focus on strengthening the network through both the provision of grants and the development of funding resources. RATNâ€™s Business Development unit was formally launched in order to lay a solid foundation for business development within the organisation. The portfolio of the unit includes the management of INSTANT grants among others.
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Ensuring sustainability RATN is at an important juncture in its development as an organisation. To ensure sustainability during the current strategic plan and beyond, RATN developed a resource mobilisation strategy that diversifies its functioning base ensures the organisation remains relevant in the constantly evolving funding landscape and builds the capacity of its staff to integrate business.
Grant Management RATN administers several grant-making programs that support its alumni and Member Institutions. Through programs such as INSTANT (Initiative for Strengthening HIV/AIDS Networking and Training) and
RAIG (RATN Alumni Instant Grants), RATN promotes identification, design and implementation of innovative interventions that increase the capacity of institutions and individuals to effectively respond to current and emerging issues in the HIV and AIDS pandemic. RATNâ€™s grant-giving programs provide not only funding, but also mentoring services that develop the capacity of grantees to execute and deliver against proposed projects.
Business Development RATN relies on a variety of resources to support its activities. The Grants and Business Development department is responsible for developing and executing fundraising strategies that keep the RATN network strong. To this end, RATN cultivates mutually beneficial partnerships with bilateral and multilateral funders, foundations and corporations that share our vision for a society with the capacity to respond effectively to the HIV and AIDS pandemic.
Institutional Systems Strengthening
RATN empowers organisations to maximise their contribution to the response for sustained health and well being of their communities, through training, technical assistance and various capacity building approaches.
Building capacity of national level CSOs
Comprehensive Results Based Management Capacity Building for HIV and AIDS Service Organisations (RECABASO) is an RATN programme aimed at identifying and utilising best practices to address RBM capacity gaps among organisations implementing HIV programmes in Eastern and Southern Africa.
RATN partnered with Management Sciences for Health (MSH) to implement FANIKISHA Institutional Strengthening project. The USD 44 million five-year Cooperative Agreement (2011-2016), funded by USAID/ Kenya is expected to build the capacity of national-level CSOs to ensure and sustain their contribution to the improvements in the health and well-being of all Kenyans. FANIKISHA will work with eight Kenyan CSOs and their affiliates to strengthen their skills in financial management, human resources, management systems, leadership and governance, and advocacy so CSOs can play a more strategic role in working with the Government of Kenya and other stakeholders to deliver effective health services at the community level.
RATN formed and trained a team of RBM experts to participate in the project. Seventeen AIDS Service Organisations (ASOs) in need of capacity building were then identified and the team of RBM experts conducted detailed diagnosis of RBM capacity gaps through site visits. Recommendations from the site visits included experimental learning, internships, on-site mentoring and technical support and follow-ups. The ASOs are currently running projects to bridge the gaps identified courtesy of small grants of $10,000 from RATN. An online learning community through which the ASOs can share experiences in applying new knowledge and skills has been put in place. A database of RBM experts, who will transform into a critical mass for continuous technical support and mentoring to other ASOs in the region, has also been developed.
The project, launched in October 2011, will leverage RATNâ€™s expertise in networking and forumsâ€™ management to achieve its goals, specifically through short-term technical assistance (STTA) in advocacy, leadership and management and in the development of Institutional Strengthening standards.
RECABASO came at a very appropriate time as we are working on improving our strategic direction by revising our Strategic Plan to enable us be more responsive to the HIV and AIDS response in Uganda. The project is a good opportunity for AIC to start thinking of results as it develops its Monitoring and Evaluation systems. We believe that in five years time, whoever will come to evaluate AIC will find an organisation being managed in a result based way and aiming to achieve greater heights. In fact, for any organisation to remain relevant, they must start thinking in terms of Result Based Management --Raymond Byaruhanga, Executive Director, AIDS Information Centre, Uganda
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Addressing Results Based Management capacity gaps
Capacity Development through Innovative Small Grants RATN provides eligible Member Institution grantees with direct grants for execution of small projects to enable them effectively respond to the HIV and AIDS pandemic. The Initiative for Strengthening HIV/AIDS Networking and Training (INSTANT) is a small grants (up to $40,000) programme that stimulates generation of innovative and responsive solutions to HIV capacity gaps in countries and communities being targeted by RATN work. The programme contributes to enhanced training opportunities and helps RATN to build capacity of its Member Institutions in proposal development and results based management. Through this scheme, RATN Member Institutions have been able to implement more than 40 projects in the Eastern and Southern Africa region.
RATN supports the development of a national curriculum for MARPS The 2009 Kenya National Modes of Transmission Survey (MOTS) found that 35.6 percent of new HIV infections were due to unaddressed HIV related risks and vulnerabilities of Men who have Sex with Men (MSM), Sex Workers (SW) and Injection Drug Users (IDUs).
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While MARPs may engage in some of the most risky behaviour for HIV acquisition, an assessment of programmes targeting them showed a gap in Kenya’s prevention and care, putting this group among the most vulnerable as far as HIV and AIDS response is concerned. Whereas the MOTS 2009 report highlighted programming for MARPs as critical in reducing the national HIV prevalence, to 7.1 percent by 2012, offering HIV testing and counseling services to this population remains a challenge as their unique sexual needs are not addressed in existing trainings leading to a disconnect between HIV training programming and emerging HIV service needs. It is against this background that Liverpool VCT with funding from RATN’s INSTANT program partnered with Kenya’s National AIDS Control Council and STI Control Program (NASCOP) to spearhead the development of a curriculum for MARPs training in complementing HIV and AIDS response. Drawing from the existing MARPs curriculum which was found to be disjointed, a draft curriculum inclusive of a trainer’s manual was developed. A stakeholders meeting at which a Technical Working Group (TWG) was constituted to review the content and of the draft curriculum was also held. The process of developing the curriculum also involved holding four MARPS sensitivity trainings
bringing together a total of 79 participants (63 Service providers and 16 counselors) who were oriented on the curriculum. “After attending the MARPS sensitivity training and listening to the MSM sharing their experiences, I am now able to work with MARPS without stigmatisation. I no longer see them as abnormal people but respect their sexual orientation,” says Carol Wachira, an HTC counselor. Once fully implemented, it is expected that there will be an increase in the number of service providers and health facilities offering MARPS friendly services. In addition, the number of counselor supervisors sustaining attitude change will also increase. HTC providers will on the other hand be more responsive and sensitive to MARPS. Even as the manual awaits launch and implementation, it’s already having an impact, as attested by Wachira: “With the skills obtained at the training, I was able to reach some of the MSM during the World AIDS Day’s National Testing Week.” “With this manual, the health workers will be sensitive to the MARPs while providing health care services,” says HelgarMusyoki, MARPS Manager at NASCOP. ‘We would like to acknowledge the significant and key role played by LVCT and RATN in supporting the development of a MARPS National curriculum which fully addresses the needs and challenges facing the MARPS population in Kenya. This will enable the MSM community to be accepted by health care providers and the community they are living in,” says John Mathenge, an MSM participant.
Developing a gender policy In recognition that gender issues are central to both the analysis and response to HIV and AIDS, RATN commenced development of an organisational gender policy. With the support of CIDA, RATN engaged a consultant to facilitate the development of the gender policy. The policy is aimed at integrating gender issues into the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of operations, policies, plans, programmes, activities and projects as well as incorporating gender-responsive indicators in the RATN monitoring and evaluation framework. A Gender Working Group (GWG) whose mandate is to act as focal point for supporting the efforts of gender mainstreaming within RATN training and capacity development initiatives was also constituted.
Addressing the needs of women and men RATN also completed the development of a comprehensive results-based monitoring and evaluation framework which includes a mix of input indicators that reveal the extent to which any RATN activity addresses the different needs and constraints of women and men. This information will in turn feed into programmes on a continual basis to improve implementation and maximise efficacy and efficiency of RATN programmes.
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Reflections and Lessons Learnt
Since its inception, RATN has undertaken a number of exercises to document lessons, the results of which also informed the development of the current strategic plan. The key lessons learned from implementing the RATN programmes during the period under review include:
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Effective Participation of MIs Add Value to the Network
Functional Communication Channels are Vital within RATN
Involvement of Member Institutions in governance and implementation of various programmes and projects such as delivery of collaborative courses, INSTANT projects, the RECABASO, HIV capacity building forums and documentation of best practices series ensured that the institutions own the network.
Investing in communication channels such as the RATN member newsletter and the RATN website has been an effective way to keep MIs informed of vital information and resources. The newsletter and the website have also helped to improve the public profile of RATN and MI projects along with that of their courses throughout the ESA region.
Building an Effective Network requires Resources and a Plan Building a formal Network will not be achieved simply by engaging in networking activities like information sharing and promoting collaboration. Such activities are vital in creating a sense of working for a common goal but they will not in themselves give members a sense of ownership and belonging to a network. Building a formal network requires a concrete strategy and resources in order to sustain it. In other words, considering the fact that the network members are independent organisations (with own strategic plans and constituencies to serve), RATN as a network needs to be continuously strategic in designing programmes and products that are valueadding and relevant to the expectations of its network members. This process definitely requires building strong technical teams and adequate resources at both the RATN Secretariat and MI levels to ensure a timely and responsive network.
TNA is Crucial in the Development of Appropriate Training Conducting Training Needs Assessment studies is a crucial first step in developing training programmes. Using needs assessment data in programme planning helps to ensure that training courses continue being relevant to the needs of the region.
Culture of Excellence in Training creates Significant Impact Creating and encouraging a culture of excellence in course content and delivery among MIs has made a significant impact in several areas. However this needs to be strengthened to ensure that RATN courses withstand emerging market competition while utilising emerging technology advancements.
M&E Function is Vital for ensuring Quality Training The practice of feeding back the results of monitoring and evaluation into training programmes ensures continuous quality control and improvement of courses and training. Follow up studies are very important in ensuring that the skills attained during training have an impact in the field. Results of the Midterm review of the strategic plan reviewed that most of the alumni were utilising the knowledge gained in the training. RATN will continue strengthening alumni follow up and documenting success stories for all training
Gender Mainstreaming is an Important Component of HIV Response RATN takes cognisance of the fact that women and men are impacted differently by HIVand AIDS and that the needs and concerns are also different for men and
women. As such RATN continued to strengthen the capacity development programmes that target both men and women. RATN carried out a gender audit of the Secretariat and has advocated for similar audits to be carried out by all MIs so that there is a more visible gender lens in RATN programming.
Responsiveness to emerging needs in the changing HIV environment is essential That RATN has remained focused on her niche of HIV capacity development and is embracing the emerging need for community systems strengthening given that the bulk of the impact of HIV and AIDS lies with the rural communities. In addition, RATN will scale up its capacity development programmes and respond to emerging needs in areas such as health systems strengthening, women and girls, most at risk populations and other underserved populations.
RATN 2011 - 2012 | ANNUAL REPORT |
The income for RATN Secretariat was USD 2,348,290 during the financial year 2011/2012. This marked a 16% reduction in donor income over the 2010/2011 financial year. The expenditure reduced by a similar margin from USD 2,852,955 to USD 2,399,257. This reduction was due to the delay in the receipt of Sida funds which were moved to the financial year 2012/2013. Other incomes generated during the just ended financial year were USD 190,045. This reduced by USD 35,775 (16%) from USD 225, 820 raised last year. This was due to the ending of the ABBA research project during the current financial year. Over all other incomes generated 7% of the total income similar to the financial year 2010/2011.
RATN 2011 - 2012 | ANNUAL REPORT |
The main costs centres are programmes with 77% of the expenditure going to direct programme related costs. The implementation of the strategic plan by the member institutions was also enhanced with 48% of the total expenditure going directly to Member Institutions through collaborative training courses and the INSTANT projects. In terms of expenditure by programme, special projects which include INSTANT projects and RECABASO grants had the highest expenditure followed by Training and capacity development.
REPORT OF THE INDEPENDENT AUDITOR TO THE MEMBERS OF REGIONAL AIDS TRAINING NETWORK FOR THE YEAR ENDED 31ST MARCH 2012
MANAGEMENT’ RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE FINANCIAL STATEMENTS The management is responsible for the preparation of financial statements that give a true and fair view in accordance with generally accepted non-profit accounting principles and applicable International Financial Reporting Standards for Small and Medium - sized Entities (SMEs) and for such internal controls as the management may determine are necessary to enable the preparation of financial statements that are free from material misstatements, whether due to fraud or error. AUDITOR’S RESPONSIBILITY Our responsibility is to express an independent opinion on these financial statements based on our audit. We conducted our audit in accordance with International Standards on Auditing. Those standards require that we comply with ethical requirements and plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance whether the financial statements are free from material misstatement. An audit involves performing procedures to obtain audit evidence about the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements. The procedures selected depended on our professional judgment, including the assessment of the risks of material misstatement of the financial statements,
whether due to fraud or error. In making those risk assessments, we considered the internal control relevant to the organisation’s preparation of financial statements that give a true and fair view in order to design audit procedures that were appropriate in the circumstances, but not for the purpose of expressing an opinion on the organisation’s internal control. An audit also includes evaluating the appropriateness of accounting policies used and the reasonableness of accounting estimates made by the management, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of the financial statements. We believe that the audit evidence we have obtained is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for our audit opinion. OPINION In our opinion, the accompanying financial statements give a true and fair view of the financial affairs of the organisation as of 31 March 2012 and the results of its surplus and cash flows for the year then ended in accordance with the generally accepted nonprofit accounting principles and applicable International Financial Reporting Standards for Small and Medium - sized Entities (SMEs).
37 RATN 2011 - 2012 | ANNUAL REPORT |
e have audited the financial statements of the Regional AIDS Training Network set out on pages 38 to 39 which comprise the statement of financial position as at 31st March 2012, the statement of comprehensive income, the statement of changes in reserves, the cash flow statement for the year then ended, and a summary of significant accounting policies and other explanatory notes.
REGIONAL AIDS TRAINING NETWORK STATEMENT OF COMPREHENSIVE INCOME FOR THE YEAR ENDED 31ST MARCH 2012
2011 (Restated) US$
Income Grant income
Total income Expenditure Network development
Training and capacity development
Knowledge and Information management
Research, monitoring and evaluation
Secretariat and administration costs
RATN 2011 - 2012 | ANNUAL REPORT |
Total expenditure Surplus for the year
REGIONAL AIDS TRAINING NETWORK STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL POSITION FOR THE YEAR ENDED 31ST MARCH 2012
2011’ (Restated) US$
Property and equipment
CURRENT ASSETS Grant receivables from donors Trade and other receivables
Cash and cash equivalents
FUNDS AND LIABILITIES FUND BALANCES Operating fund
NON CURRENT LIABILITIES Unexpended grant CURRENT LIABILITIES Trade and other payables TOTAL FUNDS AND LIABILITIES
The financial statements on pages 38 to 39 were approved by the Board of Directors on ................... and signed on its behalf by:
……………………………. ……………………………………. Chairperson Board Member
RATN 2011 - 2012 | ANNUAL REPORT |
Annexes RATN GOVERNANCE STRUCTURE
Associate Members (Non-Voting
Full Members General Council (Voting)
Honorary Members (Non-Voting)
RATN 2011 - 2012 | ANNUAL REPORT |
40 RATN Trustees (5 Members)
2 Board SubCommittees (Programme & Finance)
RATN Board (10 Members)
Executive Director (RATN Secretariat)
Partnersâ€™ Consultative meeting
RATN SECRETARIAT ORGANOGRAM
Deputy Executive Director
Admin. Assistants x2
Finance Manager (Level 2)
Assistant Finance Manager
Research Monitoring & Evaluation Manager (Level 2)
Research Assistant (Level 3)
Training & Capacity Development Manager (Level 2)
Training Assistants x2 (Level 3)
Advocacy, Partnership & Networking Manager (Level 2)
Advocacy/ Network Assistant (Level 3)
Knowledge & Information Manager (Level 2)
Knowledge Information Assistant (Level 3)
Business Development Manager (Level 2)
Assistant Manager Grant & Business Development (Level 3)
41 RATN 2011 - 2012 | ANNUAL REPORT |
HR/ Admin. Officer and Executive Assistant (Level 3)
LIST OF RATN MEMBER INSTITUTIONS KENYA
1. African Medical Research Foundation (AMREF) 2. Centre for African Family Studies (CAFS) 3. Gertrudeâ€™s Paediatric Training Centre 4. Liverpool VCT Care and Treatment (LVCT) 5. Kenya Association of Professional Counsellors (KAPC) 6. Network for Researchers in Eastern and Southern Africa (NARESA) 7. University of Nairobi, Clinical Epidemiology Unit (CEU)
20. Churches Health Association of Zambia (CHAZ) 21. In Service Training Trust (ISTT) 22. Kara Counseling and Training Trust (KCCT) 23. The Salvation Army, Chikankata Mission Hospital
RATN 2011 - 2012 | ANNUAL REPORT |
8. AIDS Information Centre (AIC) 9. Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI) 10. Mildmay Uganda (MU) 11. The AIDS Support Organization (TASO) 12. Traditional and Modern Health Practitioners Together Against AIDS (THETA) 13. Uganda National Consumers Organization (UNCHO) TANZANIA
ZIMBABWE 24. CONNECT (ZIST) 25. Family AIDS Caring Trust (FACT) 26. Genito-Urinary Centre (GUC) 27. Southern Africa HIV and AIDS Information and Dissemination Service (SAfAIDS) 28. Zimbabwe Open University (ZOU)
29. Health Economic and HIV /AIDS Research Division (HEARD), University of Natal 30. Regional Psycho-Social Support Initiative (REPSSI)
14. Eastern and Southern African Management Institute (ESAMI) 15. Tanzania Gender Networking Programme (TGNP)
RWANDA 16. Kigali Health Institute (KHI) 17. Pro Femme Twese Hamwe
18. Malawi College of Health Sciences (MCHS) 19. Malawi Institute of Management (MIM)
33. Institute of Development Management (IDM)
31. Institute of Development Management (IDM)
32. Mananga Centre for Regional Integration and Management Development
African Medical and Research Foundation http://www.amref.org
Traditional and Modern Health Practitioners http://www.theta.org
Centre for African Family Studies http://www.cafs.org
Pro Femme Twese Hamwe, Rwanda http://www.profemme.org.rw
Gertrude’s Pediatric Training Centre http://www.gerties.org
Liverpool VCT Care and Treatment http://www.liverpoolvct.org
The Salvation Army, Chikankata Mission Hospital http://www.salvationarmy.org
CONNECT Institute of Systemic Therapy http://www.connect.co.zw
Eastern and Southern Africa Management Institute http://www.esami-africa.org/
Family AIDS Caring Trust (FACT) http://www.fact.org.zw
Tanzania Gender Networking Programme http://www.tgnp.org
Genito-Urinary Centre, City Health Department, Harare, Zimbabwe
Kigali Health Institute http://www.khi.ac.rw
Zimbabwe Open University http://www.zou.ac.zw
Kenya Association of Professional Counsellors http://www.kapc.or.ke
Network of AIDS Researchers in Eastern and Southern Africa (NARESA) http://www.naresa.org
Malawi College of Health Sciences http://www.mchs.edu.mw
Institute of Development Management (IDM) http://www.idmbls.com/
University of Nairobi, Clinical Epidemiology Unit http://www.unobi.ac.ke/
Malawi Institute of Management http://www.mim.co.mw Health Economic and HIV and AIDS Research Division (HEARD), University of Kwazulu Natal http://www.heard.org.za
AIDS Information Centre http://www.aicug.org Churches Health Association of Zambia http://www.chaz.org.zm
Infectious Diseases Institute http://www.idi-makerere.com
Uganda National Health Consumers Organization (UNHCO), Uganda http://unhco.or.ug/news
Regional Psycho-Social Support Initiative (REPSSI) http://www.repssi.org Great Lakes Initiative on AIDS (GLIA)
Mildmay Uganda http://www.mildmay.org/
Mananga Centre for Regional Integration and Management Development http://www.mananga.sz
In-Service Training Trust http://www.istt.ac.zm
The AIDS Support Organization http://www.tasouganda.org
KARA Counselling and Training Trust Ltd http://www.kara.org.zm
Southern Africa AIDS Dissemination Service South Africa (SAfAIDS) http://www.safaids.net
Regional Aid s T r a i n i n g N et w or k
Regional AIDS Training Network P.O. Box 16035, 00100 GPO, Nairobi, Kenya Tel: 254 020 263 5929, 263 5938 Mobile (Office): +254 734 999 975, 724 255 849 Fax: 254-20-3872270 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
This report summarises the annual programme and Financial Year for the period 1st April 2011 to 31st March 2 012 (FY2011/2012). It provides...