D r a f t ADVOCACY Developing an Strategy Advocacy N A GUIDE FOR by monkey6


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           Developing an


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1.    INTRODUCTION                                                                02
     The advocacy mandate of UNAIDS                                               03
     UNAIDS Mission Statement                                                     03

2.    THE ART OF ADVOCACY                                                         04
     Why do we need advocacy?                                                     04
     The difference between advocacy and other processes                          04
     Everyone can be an advocate for AIDS issues                                  05
     The advocacy role of UN Theme Groups                                         05
     The advocacy role of the UCC                                                 06
     Before planning define the guiding principles                                06

3. PLANNING AN ADVOCACY STRATEGY                                                  07
    Analysing the problem                                                         08
    Use of information                                                            08
    Setting goals and objectives                                                  09
    Identifying targets constituencies and partners                               11
        Political leaders                                                         11
        Opinion leaders                                                           11
        The media                                                                 12
        People living with HIV and AIDS                                           12
        NGOs and CBOs                                                             12
        Traditional and religious leaders                                         12
        Business groups and trade unions                                          12
        AIDS researchers                                                          13
    The use of language                                                           13

4.   BUILDING EFFECTIVE ADVOCACY PARTNERSHIPS                                     13
     Strategic partnership activities                                             14

5.   BE AWARE OF OBSTACLES TO ADVOCACY                                            16

6.   DEFINING AND MONITORING SUCCESS                                              17

                                                           Developing an Ad v o c a c y S t r a t e g y


Advocacy at UNAIDS is a strategic process     All of us working in the AIDS field are
designed to influence positive political,     advocates for increased action to tackle the
social, economic and cultural change to       epidemic regardless of our different
tackle AIDS.                                  professional areas of expertise. We need to
                                              recognize our strengths relating to advocacy
UNAIDS‘ advocacy work seeks to move spe-      and build on them.
cific constituencies into action to change
the status quo. This may be through encour-   At UNAIDS country-level advocacy strategies
aging them to promote and support key         are vital if we are to be successful but we
arguments, or to enact laws or offer          need to always remember that what works
resources to support AIDS work.               one country may fail in another.

Whether you work for the UNAIDS Secre-        No single advocacy strategy can be suc-
tariat or for one of the UNAIDS Cospon-       cessful everywhere and strategies should
soring agencies or key partners we hope       always be developed in context.
that you find this guide useful. This guide
has been developed for you and with you.      Key to delivering effective advocacy is
                                              under-standing and constantly monitoring
                                              and reassessing the context in which you
                                              need to be effective.

                                              We hope you find this a useful reference

                                              Wishing you every success in your advo-
                                              cacy efforts,

                                                                Advocacy Unit, UNAIDS

                                                       Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

   The advocacy mandate of UNAIDS                 In addition the UNAIDS Secretariat seeks
                                                  to fulfill its advocacy mandate by:
   HIV and AIDS raise complex issues that          •   Providing high-level leadership and
   require continuous and open dialogue with           coordination
   people who have power and influence. The        •   Urging rapid political and social mobi-
   goal of advocacy at UNAIDS is to enhance            lization related to the epidemic
   the understanding and commitment to
                                                   •   Providing high quality information in
   action of these important audiences, to
                                                       pursuit of these objectives
   bring about lasting, positive change.
                                                   •   Supporting a growing range of partners
                                                       with a strong emphasis on country-led
   Advocacy is a key function of the UNAIDS
   Programme – one that is embodied in our
   mission statement.
                                                  The UN Declaration of Commitment on
                                                  HIV/AIDS, adopted unanimously by the 2001
F -U N A I D S M i s s i o n S t a t e m e n t
                                                  General Assembly special session on
                                                  HIV/AIDS specifically charged the UNAIDS
   The global mission of UNAIDS as the main
                                                  Secretariat with working with countries to
   advocate for worldwide action against
                                                  ensure that the Dec larati on ‘s goals are met.
   HIV/AIDS is to lead, strengthen and
                                                  Advocacy is central to the realization of
   sup-port an expanded response to the
                                                  these goals.
   disease. This response has four specific
                                                  Clearly advocacy is a priority activity for all
   •   To prevent the transmission and spread
                                                  UNAIDS s t a ff. It is essential that UNAIDS
       of HIV;
                                                  s ta ff acquire and develop their advocacy
   •   To provide care and support for those      skills, and make advocacy a primary activ-
      infected and affected by the disease; NI    ity in the performance of their jobs.
   To reduce the vulnerability of individu-
      als and communities to HIV/AIDS; and
   N   To alleviate the socio-economic and
       human impact of the epidemic.

   The UNAIDS Secretariat supports, promotes
   and documents the role of UNAIDS as the
   leading advocate for an urgent, coordinated,
   and comprehensive response to the

                                                                                   N 03
Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y
2. THE ART OF ADVOCACY                             Certain countries, such as Thailand, Sene-
                                                   gal and Uganda, have shown that an effec-
Successful advocacy involves changing the          tive national response can be mounted to
s t a t u s q u o by moving others into taking     arrest the epidemic. In each of these coun-
action. Advocacy at UNAIDS is seen as a            tries opinion leaders, including policy mak-
strategic process designed to influence pos-       ers, educators, the media and others have
itive political, social, economic and cultural     recognized the epidemic publicly and openly,
change in the fight against AIDS.                  and acted to reduce the stigma surrounding
                                                   AIDS. They have displayed political
Advocacy should be: goal oriented; enable          courage in applying sound measures to
advocates to gain access and voice in the          reduce the spread of HIV and have com-
decision making of relevant institutions;          mitted significant resources in addressing
change the power relationships between             the epidemic. They have also prioritised
these institutions and the people affected by      working across many sectors including
their decisions; and, bring a clear imp ro ve-     organizations of people living with HIV and
ment in people‘s lives.                            AIDS. These successes were underpinned
                                                   by strong advocacy efforts.
UNAIDS‘ advocacy work seeks to move spe-
cific constituencies into action to change         The difference between advocacy
the status quo. For example, but not exclu-        and other p r o c e s s e s
sively, political leaders might be targeted
for action. This may be through encourag-          Good advocacy is about presenting a con-
ing them to promote and support key argu-          vincing case for change.
ments, or to enact laws or offer resources to
support the AIDS fight.                            Advocacy is not just advertising, public rela-
                                                   tions, media relations or community com-
Why do we need advocacy?                           munication per se - however we sometimes
                                                   use these tools in our advocacy work. When
Many factors contribute to making AIDS a           we use any advocacy tool we must do so
major advocacy challenge – including a dire        strategically in order to move targeted con-
lack of resources for care and prevention          stituencies towards action by creating a
and discrimination against individuals liv-        bet-ter understanding of HIV and AIDS and
ing with HIV and AIDS.                             articulating how they can make a difference.

Only major international mobilization can          We need to remember that in order for our
slow the spread of HIV and alleviate the           advocacy work to be truly effective it needs
devastating impact of the AIDS epidemic.           to be strategic. To be strategic each activity
Advocacy, through mobilizing political and         will need to contribute to clear goals and
civil leaders at national level as well as on      objectives appropriate to the context we are
the international stage to take concrete           try ing to change.
action to fight AIDS, is critical to this global

                                                               Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

                                                                                                   0 4
For example a well attended press confer-       N    Get clear key messages out to those
ence may help raise general awareness               who matter
about how AIDS can impact on women but          N    Package their advocacy arguments in
it only truly becomes part of ‗advocacy‘            w a y s that make them compelling to
when it is planned as a scene-setter for fol-       their targets
low-up meetings with government officers        N   Generate accurate strategic information
and ministers to help push through legis-       N   Share knowledge with key stakeholders
lation to ensure women have greater access
                                                N They listen and understand other view-
to property rights.
                                                   points and are on top of the debate
                                                 N Keep the interests of the communities
Ev e ry o n e ca n be a n a d v o ca te fo r
                                                  affected first
AIDS issues
                                                N Build coalitions and partnerships
Advocates do not have to be highly influ-
                                                The advocacy role of UN Theme
ential, famous, or otherwise ―important‖
people and you don‘t need ‗advocacy‘ in
your job title to advocate. Many of the
                                                Advocacy is one of the central functions of
world‘s most effective advocacy movements
                                                the UN Theme Group. Theme Group-led
have been led by ordinary people who are
                                                advocacy efforts can help create the
well-informed, committed, and affected by
                                                enabling environment for a rapid and scaled
an issue or situation.
                                                up response to the AIDS epidemic at the
                                                country level.
Many of the successes in the global fight
against AIDS have been driven by ordinary
                                                At the 13th Programme Coordination
people living with HIV who have organized
                                                Board meeting of UNAIDS, the members
themselves to apply pressure on govern-
                                                recommended that:
ments, scientists, business and the
inter-national community at strategic
                                                ―UNAIDS should take the necessary steps
points to accelerate action.
                                                at country level to support the develop-
                                                ment, implementation and monitoring of
AIDS touches everyone in one w a y or
                                                an explicit UN Theme Group advocacy strat-
another so we all have something legitimate
                                                egy on HIV/AIDS for the entire UN system
to say. Advocacy is often less about who an
                                                in-country.‖ (Action 16)
advocate is, and more about what they do
and say. The most successful advocates: N
                                                ―UNAIDS should intensify its support in
Maximize their resources by carefully
                                                countries to the development and imple-
    choosing target constituencies that carry
                                                mentation of strategies that engage a range
    particular weight in a country or local
                                                of diverse actors, especially the media and
                                                other civil society actors, in more sustainable
N Develop messages and strategies that          advocacy approaches in the response to the
    encourage their target constituencies to
                                                epidemic.‖ (Action 17)
    take action

                                                          Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

                                                                                        N 05
The advocacy role of the UNAIDS                 Before planning d e f i n e the
Country Coordinators (UCCs)                     guiding principles

UCCs play an important role in advocacy at        As already stated, the global mission of
UNAIDS. UCCs have a clear picture of            UNAIDS is to lead, strengthen and support
what is going on at the country level and can    an expanded response to AIDS through:         •
facilitate information flow from other parts
                                                     preventing the transmission and spread
of the world. UCCs can take a holistic view
                                                  of HIV
of the entire situation and are well-posi-
tioned to facilitate the process of setting     •   providing care and support for those
advocacy priorities.                               infected and affected by the disease    •
                                                reducing the vulnerability of individuals
Specifically, UCCs should fulfil the follow-       and communities to HIV/AIDS
ing tasks in developing and implementing          valleviating the socio-economic and
the advocacy effort:                               human impact of the epidemic
1. Assist the UN theme group in prepar-
    ing and implementing an advocacy plan.      Advocacy principles are developed from the
2. Assist the UN theme group in prepar-         organization‘s mission and are broad state-
    ing key advocacy materials at the coun-     ments of intention that help guide advocacy
    try level.                                  planning and action.
3. Facilitate     the    dissemination   and
     exchange of key information to a           Successful advocacy strategies will often be
     variety of audiences.                      constructed around a set of shared princi-
4. Represent the UN theme group in key          ples. These principles will help bond the
     meetings, conferences and events held      various stakeholders needed to develop and
     within the country.                        deliver a successful strategy or plan.
5. Facilitate UN theme group members in
     their advocacy efforts.                    Some of the key principles that govern many
6. Identify opportunities for advocacy at       AIDS related advocacy efforts include a com-
     the national level.                        mitment to:
7. Undertake internal advocacy among
    UNAIDS Cosponsors and theme group.
                                                •   The further promotion of public aware-
                                                    ness of the AIDS epidemic
8. Identify potential obstacles and view-
    points and prepare contingency plans        •   An urgent and sustained response to
    for crises.                                     AIDS
9. Organise key events for advocacy.
                                                •    The respect, protection and fulfilment
  10.Support the monitoring and evaluation
                                                    of human rights together with com-
  of the advocacy work plan.
                                                    passion and active opposition to all forms
                                                    of stigma and exclusion of people living
                                                    with, and affected by, HIV and AIDS
                                                •     Intensified efforts to enhance local capac-
                                                    ity and resources of existing national and
                                                    local entities, and the mobilization of
                                                    new and non-traditional partners in the

Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y
SI The greater involvement of people living   3. PLANNING AN ADVOCACY
   with HIV/AIDS and other marginalised       STRATEGY
   groups at the forefront of Advocacy
   efforts                                    Advocacy should not be left to chance. To
                                              start with it requires a clear analysis of the
                                              status quo and what needs to change. From
                                              this point advocates can develop a consol-
                                              idated and clear plan for action. This process
                                              will be made easier if all working on the
                                              planning process have bought in to a set of
                                              guiding principles as described in the pre-
                                              vious section.

                                              The planning process should also ensure
                                              that objectives are shared, and as far as
                                              possible developed, with key partners to
                                              ensure the comparative advantages of all
                                              partners are fully utilised.

                                              Advocacy is not a one time effort. Good
                                              advocates always have their end goal in
                                              mind and work towards it step by step at a
                                              time. Usually the most lasting impact from
                                              advocacy work comes from a sustained
                                              engagement of the issues. The most effec-
                                              tive advocacy efforts are driven by strategies
                                              with clear goals over a long period.

                                              Delivering effective advocacy can include:
                                              organizing campaigns; working in collabo-
                                              ration with other organizations; meeting
                                              with political leaders; developing effective
                                              materials and working with the media. But
                                              these activities only become ‗Advocacy‘
                                              when they are focussed on a clear advocacy
                                              goal or outcome.

                                              No single advocacy strategy will be suc-
                                              cessful everywhere. What works in Tanza-
                                              nia may not be appropriate for Cambodia.
                                              What works in the national capital may not
                                              be effective in smaller, more rural areas. A
                                              basic rule of advocacy is that effective

                                                       Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

approaches should be tailored to local audi-             leaders, religious leaders, donors,
ences and circumstances. Effective advo-                 NGOs, village elders)
cacy needs a comprehensive understanding              • What are they currently doing about
of the environment in which you plan to                  it?
operate.                                              • How will they react to change? •
                                                      Who can be your allies?
A framework for preparing an advocacy                 • Who can pose challenges?
strategy will take several stages and could           • How are decisions made?
include:                                              • How can you i n f l u e n c e t h e
N Definition of guiding principles                       process?
NI Analysis of the problem                            • What changes do you want as result
• Use of research and information                        of your advocacy?
• Setting a goal and objectives                       • Are they realistic?
NI Identifying target constituencies and              • Who s h o u l d d e t e r m i n e t h e
    partners                                             changes needed?
N Planning key strategic activities                   • How will the changes brought about
                                                         change the lives of those affected?
Analysis of the problem
                                                   Answering these questions will help iden-
Like all intervention planning exercises,          tify the advocacy challenges. These will then
before undertaking any advocacy activity, it       influence the formulation of advocacy goals
is important to do a situation analysis and        and objectives.
identify potential obstacles and challenges.
You need to be absolutely familiar with the        If resources permit you may want to encap-
environment in which you plan to operate.          sulate the answers to the above questions
                                                   in a report that will form the base line from
Some of the questions AIDS advocates need          which to launch your activities.
to ask as part of a situation analysis at this
stage of planning include:                         Use of research and information
    N What is the status of the epidemic
       in your area?                               Effective Advocacy depends on facts. Unless
    NI What are the main problems in               you are able to prove you know what you
       your area relating to access to HIV         are talking about – and that what you are
       and AIDS care and prevention                talking about is important – the persons
       services?                                   you are seeking to influence will have little
    • Who is most affected by HIV and to           reason to heed your message.
       what degree does this affect their
       lives?                                      There are a number of global and regional
    • What e x a c e r b a t e s t h e s e prob-   declarations that provide an excellent
       lems? (laws, customs, individuals,          frame-work for advocacy action based on
       politics, resources, policies)              inter-nationally   recognised      strategic
    • Who can change this situation?               research and information. These include the
       (politicians, bureaucrats, elected          Millennium

                                                            Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

Development Goals and the goals within           Setting the goal and objectives
the 2001 Declaration of Commitment of the
United Nations Special Session on                When it comes to setting the advocacy goal
HIV/AIDS.                                        and objectives it is critical that a sound evi-
                                                 dence base is used. Credible research and
In addition there are numerous excellent         information is the cornerstone of any advo-
sources for the information - the publications   cacy strategy.
of UNAIDS and its Cosponsors and their
websites are always a good initial starting      Goal:
point. The UNAIDS intranet provides links to     The advocacy goal needs to encapsulate the
many useful information sources.                 w h a t and the w h y . Internally, the advocacy
                                                 goal will help to keep work focused.
The   UNAIDS/WHO         annual   Epidemic       Externally the goal encapsulates the
U p d a t e , released every year just before    pro-gramme of work for the benefit of
World AIDS Day, provides an overall              others such as targeted constituencies,
analysis of the state of the epidemic and        community groups, the media and potential
includes reported AIDS cases and HIV             partners.
prevalence in key populations, number of
people living with HIV, number of AIDS           While the goals of AIDS advocacy efforts
orphans, and AIDS deaths. Every two years        m a y vary, particularly at national level, many
prior to the International AIDS Conference       are premised on a similar shared aim: to
UNAIDS publishes a Global Report which           mobilize governments, civil society, and
also includes country specific data.             the private sector to expand national and
                                                 international political programmes and
Within countries there are also information      funding commitments and intensify their
resources that can be drawn upon to assist       actions to effectively address the AIDS
with advocacy these might include: National      epidemic.
Strategic Plans and Programmes, govern-
ment       policy   documents,     research      The above goal may be a good starting
under-taken and published by academic            point from which to refine your own national
institutions, international and national         level advocacy goal.
NGOs, bilateral development agencies and
others.                                          Objectives:
                                                 Advocacy activities without clear objectives
Your advocacy will be most effective if facts    do not produce sustainable results. Good
are tailored to the interests of your targeted   advocacy objectives provide specific, meas-
constituencies. Most advocacy audiences          urable steps towards reaching the desired
are most interested in facts concerning their    goals. Objectives usually identify specific
own country. And, as for success stories, a      actions to be undertaken and time frames
nearby example is usually more compelling        for their completion.
than one from far a w a y .

                                                           Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

Good objectives are SMART:                     They can also be further categorized based on:
NI Specific and simple                           • Geographical scope: (for example,
• Measurable                                     national, regional, international)
• Achievable and actionable                  • Target audience: government officials, NGO
NI Relevant (to the goal)                              and private sector operatives
N Time-referenced (with a date for             • Purpose: building awareness, expression of
    completing the actions)                        commitment; increasing public dialogue,
                                                   or taking specific actions such as
Objectives can be categorized as:                  fundraising or promoting legislative
• Short-term (to be achieved in the imme-          amendments
   diate time period, for example within a
• Medium-term (to be accomplished in the     F -What is an advocacy objective?
   not-too-distant future, for example
   within two or three years)
                                              An advocacy objective aims to change the
• Long-term (to be accomplished in a rel-
                                              policies, programmes or positions of gov-
   atively distant time, for example five
                                              ernments, institutions or organizations. Your
                                              advocacy objective is what you want to
                                              change, who will make the change, by how
                                              much and when.
                                              An objective is an incremental and realistic
                                              step towards a larger goal. It is not a general
                                              goal. Keep the broader objective in mind,
                                              but also focus on intermediate results. An
                                              objective must be specific and measurable.

 Is an advocacy objective                    Is not an advocacy objective

 Decriminalise sex work                      Empowerment of sex workers
                                             to negotiate safer sex

 Ensure that national spending on            Undertake resource mobilisation at
 HIV/AIDS increases by 10% each year         country level

 Ensure that the national care               Provide care to 20,000 people
 programme is funded                         by end 2003

                                                        Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

Identifying target constituencies                essary action. Normally, though, advocates
and partners                                     ―build from below,‖ influencing key opinion
                                                 leaders or national sectors, which in turn
Advocacy strategies vary widely according        bring their own influence to bear on
to the ever shifting context. At times they      political leaders.
may target groups with direct influence like
legislators and at other times it may be         While influential groups or sectors differ,
more appropriate to target those that can        the list below contains some of the most
help create a climate for change like jour-      important advocacy allies common to most
nalists. As contexts and strategies change,      societies:
so do key partners and key targeted con-
stituencies.                                        Political leaders and
                                                    g o v e r n m e n t officials
Since no advocate has the time, money and        A key target for many advocacy initiatives
energy to educate and persuade every             is political leadership. The success of AIDS
organization or constituency that might          advocacy rests on its ability to galvanize
conceivably influence public policy, the most    heads of state and government officials to
effective advocates select a limited number      generate a significantly greater level of polit-
of targets, prioritizing key individuals,        ical and public commitment to an acceler-
organizations and networks that are most         ated response to the AIDS epidemic, and a
likely to influence public opinion and the       broad mobilization of society.
decisions and actions of policy makers.
                                                 In addition to influencing national and local
Understanding and focusing on the desired        policies, political leaders can be encouraged
target group is key to successful advocacy.      to bring their influence to bear on various
If the wrong group is targeted, expected         multinational entities. In some instances,
results will not be achieved and valuable        senior civil servants rather than high officials
and scarce resources will be wasted. Ide-        may be best able to influence policies related
ally, these advocacy targets will become         to HIV and AIDS. Because civil servants
advocacy pa rtners, working with you in turn     sometimes have influence over only one
to generate more advocacy for an effective       component of AIDS policy, you will need
response to HIV and AIDS.                        to trim your message to the topics on which
                                                 these civil servants can be most helpful.
Widely varying circumstances across the             Opinion leaders
globe ensure that there is no single recipe
                                                 Many persons who have no direct connec-
for effective political action. Your selection
                                                 tion with public policy-making bodies may
of advocacy targets needs to depend on the
                                                 nonetheless be able to exert considerable
specific political and social environment of
                                                 influence and mobilize public opinion. These
the country in which you are working.
                                                 individuals might include sports figures,
                                                 musical artists, writers, academics and the
Advocates working within the UN system
                                                 like. However care needs to be taken in
may have the opportunity to directly influ-
                                                 selecting these kinds of targets as it unlikely
ence top political leaders to take the nec-

                                                           Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

that they will be aware of the key facts and     up to involve them in the promotion of
sensitivities around HIV and AIDS. Time will     issues on which they have particular expert-
be needed to sensitize them to the issue         ise or influence. However, given the tension
before they are able to advocate effectively.    that often exists between governments and
With adequate preparation advocates can          NGOs, careful consideration should be
encourage such individuals to speak out          given to how these partnerships can best be
publicly on HIV and AIDS and mobilize            structured.
others in their field to do so as well. Plans
to maintain their interest and commitment,
                                                    Traditional and Religious
once engaged, will need to be established.
                                                 Meetings with key religious leaders and
    The media                                    with lay groups that have influence on reli-
The media can contribute to developing a         gious institutions can also be effective.
sense of urgency around an accelerated           Advocates can emphasize the impact of
response to AIDS. The media plays a key          AIDS on the national or local population
role in setting the political agenda, chal-      and religious leaders can be encouraged
lenging ignorance or building support for        publicly to display compassion toward
particular initiatives in many societies. Even   persons living with HIV. Religious entities
in countries with state controlled media it is   that have social welfare or relief operations
still possible to use the media to help create   in the country can be encouraged to
a background of ―noise‖ to support wider         integrate HIV-related services into their
advocacy e fforts.                               activities, to the extent they have not done
                                                 so already.
   People living with HIV
   and AIDS
                                                 In many countries traditional leaders have
People with HIV and AIDS have historically       large followings and are ve r y influential
been key advocates in driving forward the        with government policy-makers. They can
global response. Individuals living with HIV     provide unparalleled access to sectors of
often have a clear understanding of which        society - influencing traditional leaders is a
systems in their own country, region, or         crucial strategic approach in many parts of
locality are in need of greater support. Most    the world.
importantly their participation gives a per-
sonal power and immediacy to AIDS advo-             Business groups and
cacy efforts that is hard to ignore.                trade unions
                                                 Business groups or individual companies
   Non-governmental organizations
                                                 can be approached as sponsors for specific
   and community-
                                                 projects or encouraged to take part in com-
   based organizations
                                                 munity and workplace initiatives. National
A broad range of national sectors can play       business councils and business associations
an effective role in the fight against HIV       should also be approached, as well as
and AIDS. Key networks of support and            multi-nationals with special interests in
advocates need to be identified in the           developing countries. More and more work
non-governmental community and plans             is now being generated through trade
drawn                                            unions – a potentially powerful ally in many

Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y
   AIDS researchers                              4. BUILDING EFFECTIVE
AIDS researchers can become an influential       ADVOCACY PARTNERSHIPS
group of partners for AIDS advocates,
setting an emergency research agenda for         Initiating partnerships and nurturing a diverse
addressing the special needs of individual       collection of interests can take time and
countries or regions.                            effort, but it allows different groups to cap-
                                                 italize on each other‘s strengths. By their
The use of language                              very existence, diverse partnerships com-
                                                 municate to policy makers, opinion leaders,
Careful and sensitive use of language is crit-   and the public at large that an issue is so
ical to the success of any AIDS-related          important that a wide range of interests –
pro-gramme – particularly advocacy work          who may otherwise have little in common –
which often seeks to engage a wide range of      have come together to promote change.
constituents and partners. Careless use of       Partnerships       also      allow      smaller
language can be stigmatising and language        organizations to pool their resources and
used in advocacy strategies and plans should     take on projects and initiatives that are too
avoid this at all costs.                         large for individual groups to address.

Voice of America produced a simple style         Certain guidelines apply for building a suc-
sheet for broadcasters, which includes a         cessful advocacy partnership, whether
useful summary of phrases that should be         short-term or ongoing:
used to avoid some of the common pitfalls
in describing HIV and AIDS. See Annex A.
                                                 •    Be inclusive. Everyone involved in the
                                                     partnership must feel that his or her
                                                     opinion will be heard and respected.

                                                 •    Agree on clear objectives. Successful
                                                     partnerships set goals, and members
                                                     agree that all activities are designed to
                                                     accomplish these goals.

                                                 •   Decide how decisions w i l be made. Part-
                                                     nerships often operate by consensus, if
                                                     only because the group wishes to focus
                                                     on areas of common agreement. Where
                                                     consensus is not possible, some part-
                                                     nerships    allow     a    majority    or
                                                     ―super-majority‖ to carry the day. In
                                                     either   event,    clear   rules    about
                                                     decision-making are very helpful. Larger
                                                     partnerships may decide to select a
                                                     steering group or executive committee to
                                                     help run the partnership between general
                                                     meetings; in such case, the limits on the
                                                     committee‘s decision-making power are
                                                     agreed on in advance by the entire

Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y
NI Adopt strong communications mecha-
   nisms. One of the easiest ways for a
                                                 •   Leadership and group dynamics: to get
   partnership to wither is for members to           opinion and/or political leaders to ‗lend
   feel that they are out of the communi-            their voices‘, there is need to
   cations ―loop.‖ Therefore, it is vital to         under-stand the structure of leadership
   find effective means to communicate               in different communities and to identify
   important group news to members.                  key targets.
N Plan for disputes. Assume that disputes
   might arise within the partnership.
                                                 •    Modern publicity methods: a modern
                                                     campaign is an integration of marketing,
   Although they may be upsetting and
                                                     advertising, public relations, news
   time-consuming, disputes may also indi-
                                                     making, community mobilization, and
   cate the passion that partnership mem-
                                                     other communication methods. While
   bers have for the partnership and its
                                                     AIDS advocates may not always have the
   activities – a good thing when it comes
                                                     resources needed for all of these, organ-
   to advocacy. Partnerships that find ways
                                                     ized communications and publicity efforts
   to work through disagreements tend to
                                                     are central to advocacy success. Examples
   be stronger afterwards. Unless you are
                                                     of these from the private, public and
   willing to see group members walk way,
                                                     NGO sectors may usefully be exchanged.
   try not to allow disgruntled members to
   remain isolated too long.                     •   Local resource mobilization: all com-
                                                     munities have at least some of the vital
Strategic partnership a ctiv itie s                  resources necessary for successful advo-
                                                     cacy. Local resources will need to be
A good advocacy strategy turns its principles,       identified and ways identified to ensure
goal and objectives into action. It provides         that local actors claim part ownership of
a broad plan and approach for achieving the          the programmes.

advocacy objectives. Much of this work is
most effective when it is organized in part-         Bad press and negative publicity: because
nership with agencies sharing the same               advocacy is about ‗change‘ it can
advocacy goals.                                      some-times lead to negative responses
                                                     from some. There is therefore the need
People who join together in an advocacy              to agree on how to manage bad press
partnership will need to have a common               reportage and negative publicity.
mindset about the strategies and methods to
be used. To this end, agreement will need to     •   National culture and communication -
be achieved in the following areas, among            facilitators and constraints: as in every
others:                                              social change situation, there are some
N Advocacy orientation: the organization of          aspects of national and local culture that
   consultative meetings, workshops or               can facilitate advocacy; there are as many
   brainstorming sessions might be con-              also that can work against it.
   sidered to come up with plans of action
   relating to the national advocacy vision,
                                                 •    Dealing with failures and opposition
                                                     (government and public): Advocacy is
   goal, and objectives.
                                                     not always successful. Sometimes,
                                                     instead of winning support, we can face
                                                     open confrontation or antagonism, for a

variety of reasons that might not be
advocacy-related. To know how to use

      Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y
advocacy, it is helpful to know how it was     In addition to this Guide on Developing an
(successfully or unsuccessfully) used in the   Advocacy Strategy UNAIDS is developing a
past - or is being used now in various         supporting toolkit of Advocacy tools and
sectors and settings.                          tactics that will seek to ensure that advocacy
                                               activities are effective. The toolkit will
 Some suggested advocacy activities:           include sections on:
   NArranging meetings and seminars               v Preparing for a one to one or small group
si Fully exploiting international theme             meeting
  days including World AIDS Day                   N Making speeches and presentations
N Making presentations to conferences si          v Developing strong advocacy messages N
Producing publications                            Writing fact sheets
si Using information strategically to engage      N Developing a campaign
  new partners                                    v Working with the media
si Contributing to listservs, web sites and       NTargeting parliamentarians and
  e-discussion forums                               policy-makers
N Creating media opportunities                    v Engaging new leaders in HIV and AIDS
si Delivering campaigns                             work
si Raising issues with government offi-           N Making best use of World AIDS Day
  cials and policy makers                         v Working with the World AIDS Campaign
                                                  N Getting the most out of web sites, list-
                                                    servs and electronic discussion groups v
                                                  Working with celebrities

                                                         Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

5 . BE AWARE OF OBSTACLES                          often force advocates to work against a num-
TO ADVOCACY                                        ber of conscious and unconscious obstacles.

Since effective advocacy leads to change it        A number of common obstacles to be aware
rarely goes unchallenged. Social discomfort        of as you embark on your advocacy
with AIDS and its means of transmission            pro-gramme are listed below:


N Denial – the refusal of political and opinion leaders to acknowledge or respond to HIV and
N Fear – fear of becoming overwhelmed, fear of political opposition, fear of negative pub licity,
  fear of social rejection, fear of the stigma attached to AIDS
N Inadequate information about the extent of HIV and AIDS or its true impact
N Insufficient resource allocations for health care, social services, or accessible HIV testing N
Failure to protect the human rights of persons living with HIV and AIDS
N Uneasiness over public discussion of sexuality, and over the challenging of cultural and
  social taboos
N Fatalistic attitudes and the belief that the further spread of HIV is inevitable
N Concern that expanding the response to AIDS will absorb a hugely disproportionate amount
  of scarce public funds
N Failure to pursue policies that are known to be effective
N Failure of the international community to adequately respond to the emergency nature of the
  AIDS crisis in many countries

                                                             Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

6. DEFINING AND MONITORING                     monitoring should happen at district, as
SUCCESS                                        well as at provincial and national levels for
                                               country-level advocacy strategies. UNAIDS
Once an advocacy strategy has been devel-      will continue to improve the monitoring and
oped it is important to think about moni-      analysis of advocacy effectiveness at global
toring its activity and outcomes. A strategy   and regional levels.
with a well-defined starting point or
base-line and clearly measurable objectives    On-going monitoring allows advocates to
will find the task of monitoring and           stay aware of all problems and constraints
evaluation easier than one which has loose     which may slow progress and provide the
objectives.                                    information they may need to refine their
                                               advocacy planning.
The level of evaluation will v e r y much
depend on the resources available. Moni-       Evaluation should seek to periodically assess
toring and evaluation can take many forms      progress against a series of indicators iden-
and both formal and informal research          tified in the advocacy strategy‘s objectives.
should be encouraged throughout the life       Evaluation indicators for advocacy progress
span of an advocacy strategy to inform new     usually fall into the following three groups:
approaches and develop ideas. Advocacy            v Process indicators – for example has
strategies should be flexible and respond to        your country developed an advocacy
the changing environment so constant                strategy or recently revised a strategy or
mapping of the advocacy environment is              plan? What advocacy frameworks are
vital if efforts are to be successful.              in place?
                                                  N Outcome-based indicators - by track-
Examples of monitoring and evaluation               ing progress on planned activities, for
advocacy activity might include:                    example an outcome based indicator
  si Analysis of progress towards legisla-          might be the number of local activities
    tive or policy change targeted by the           organised around World AIDS Day, the
    strategy                                        percentage of health facilities offering
  si Analysis of the amount of new resources        comprehensive HIV care and treatment,
    committed to fighting AIDS secured fol-         the numbers of people seeking HIV
    lowing a sustained advocacy campaign            testing, the level of media coverage on
  si Numbers of statements issued by heads          HIV and AIDS or analysing progress
    of state relating to tackling AIDS              towards a legislative change goal.
                                                  N Impact-based indicators – these indi-
The key to effective monitoring is to ensure        cators are usually longer term and are
that the objectives developed at the out-set        often directly related to the evolution of
are measurable and that resources are               mortality, morbidity or economic impact
invested into constantly tracking progress          of HIV and AIDS.
towards the objectives.
                                               All countries implementing advocacy strate-
Monitoring should be continuous allowing       gies should take care to define their own
step-by-step recording of the progress made    indicators for monitoring progress as part of
towards the advocacy objectives. Ideally
                                                         Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

the objective setting exercise. (See earlier
section on setting goals and objectives.)

Remember advocacy activities without clear
objectives do not produce sustainable results.
Good advocacy objectives provide specific,
measurable steps towards reaching the
desired goals. Objectives usually identify
specific actions to be undertaken and time
frames for their completion. Good objectives
are SMART:
N Specific and simple
N Measurable
NI Achievable and actionable
N Relevant (to the goal)
N Time-referenced (with a date for
    completing the actions)

                                                 Developing an Ad v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

                                                   ANNEX A

Try to say                                               Try n o t t o s a y
HIV                                                      AIDS virus
There is no ―AIDS virus‖. The virus associated
with AIDS is called the Human
Immunodeficiency Virus or HIV.
HIV                                                      HIV Virus
The initials ―HIV‖ include the word virus, so
―HIV Virus‖ is redundant.

HIV-positive or HIV-infected                    AIDS sufferers
Many people living with HIV are healthy and
happy. People living with AIDS can have periods
of relatively good health. They may object to
being portrayed as suffering.

HIV-positive or HIV-infected                        AIDS infected
AIDS is not a virus or disease. It is a syndrome of
opportunistic infections and diseases. Thus, one
cannot be infected with AIDS.
To have AIDS or live with AIDS                           AIDS victims or innocent victims
People with AIDS are not victims – to call
someone a victim implies powerlessness.

Innocent is generally used when talking about
children who are infected. The use of the word
―innocent‖ to children who have become
infected is discriminatory because it implies that
others are ―guilty.‖

Person living with HIV/AIDS                              AIDS victim or sufferer
Persons living with AIDS or PLWHAs
This term is sometimes used to cover the people          The word victim has negative connotations. Use
a f f e c t e d , too – partners, parents, caregivers.   the less slanted phrase ―person with AIDS.‖ And
                                                         use it only when the person you are referring to
                                                         actually has AIDS. A person who is HIV-infected
                                                         does not necessarily have AIDS.

It is more accurate to report that someone         To die of AIDS
has died of an AIDS-related illness.
People do not die of AIDS; They die of a disease
such as tuberculosis (TB) or bronchitis from their
immune system as a result of HIV infection.

HIV Antibody Test or HIV Test                            Test for AIDS, AIDS Testing, AIDS Blood Test
There is no test for AIDS. The test is a blood test
to determine if antibodies to HIV are present.

                                                                        Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y

Try to say                                           Try n o t t o s a y
Risk behavior                                        Risk group
No social, religious, racial or cultural group is
more at risk for HIV disease than any other
group. Behaviors put people at risk for infection,
not the groups they belong to.
Risk of HIV infection                        Risk of contracting AIDS
Acquiring HIV infection                      Risk of AIDS infection
Transmitting HIV                             Transmitting AIDS
AIDS is not a disease. It is a syndrome.
No one is at risk from AIDS nor can anyone
CATCH AIDS. Only HIV can be transmitted from
person to person.
HIV-infected person                            AIDS-infected person
People are infected with HIV —- not AIDS. AIDS
is the end stage of the HIV continuum.

AIDS-related illness                                 Died from AIDS
AIDS-related pneumonia
People die from opportunistic infections or
AIDS-related illnesses. AIDS is not a disease –
no one dies of AIDS.

Drug therapy                                         Drugs for AIDS
AIDS-related drugs
AIDS-related drugs are used to combat specific
opportunistic infections, such as tuberculosis or
pneumonia. AIDS is not a single disease.
There are no drugs for AIDS.

                                                                    Developing an A d v o c a c y S t r a t e g y


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