Enabling the environment for harm reduction strategy in mena
Middle East and North Africa Harm Reduction AssociationEnabling the Environment for harmreduction strategy in MENA region The experience of MENAHRA Elie Aaraj Executive Director IAS 2012 Washington D.C. IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.
MENAHRA aims at Enabling the environment through:strengthening local and regional technical capacity to develop, implement, monitor and evaluate HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment services targeted at IDUs IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.
Harm reduction situation in 2008 IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.
Harm reduction situation in 2012OST-pilotOST-scale upNSP-pilotNSP-scale upHIV prevention for IDUs in NASPHRD policy adopted IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.
Current situation in 2012• The International Harm Reduction Conference is in Lebanon-MENA for the first time in 2011• OST introduced in Morocco, Lebanon and Afghanistan• Oman is requesting assistance to establish the first OST site• Bahrain is requesting assistance to develop a HR strategy• Tunisia developed a HR strategy and sought its funding from the GF• Syria requested funding for harm reduction services from the GF• Egypt and Pakistan are piloting outreach• NSP is scaled up in Lebanon, Afghanistan, Morocco, Tunisia, and Jordan IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.
MENAHRA’s contribution• Grants provided to 14 CSOs to implement or pilot Harm Reduction projects in: Algeria, Afghanistan, Egypt, Iran, Lebanon, Pakistan, Tunisia.• Outreach and peer education, NSP, OST, VCT on HIV and Hepatitis B&C, Condom distribution, referral, advocacy havebeen provided to several thousand IDU with MENAHRA’s support.• 4 model programs implemented with a support from MENAHRA IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.
MENAHRA’s Contribution ---- continued• Tens of training workshops for around 2000 people• 17 different advocacy materials• 28 newsletter on HR in MENA• Active Social network and interactive website IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.
Reportedly by stakeholders– CSOs that benefited from MENAHRA activities report growth in harm reduction service provision beyond their individual projects– information sharing in the Region on harm reduction has dramatically increased as a result of MENAHRA activities– MENAHRA activities have contributed to changes that favour harm reduction in both policies and practices IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.
External facilitating factors• Advocacy by international agencies like WHO, UNODC, UNAIDS and other international NGOs, bilateral and multilateral donors• Resources made available through international partners, particularly the Global Fund to fight HIV, Tuberculosis & Malaria• Drosos unprecedented interest in the civil society and key populations at increased risk of HIV in the region• Better understanding of harm reduction as a public health approach by policy makers and implementers• Good examples in the2012 - Washington D.C. Iran, Lebanon, Morocco IAS region from
Challenges• Geographic, sociopolitical and epidemiological context• Low prevalence = low priority for resources? – Global Fund prioritization of countries• Nascent programs and new understanding = low priority? – Countries unable to prove their urgency to introduce HR intervention vis-à-vis donors IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.
MENAHRA’s ambitions IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.
Conclusion• There is a rising opportunity of an increased acceptance of harm reduction in MENA• It is difficult to assess the contribution of MENAHRA to this change however; MENAHRA’s M&E show a significant role in inducing this change IAS 2012 - Washington D.C.