Publication Date
Publication Date: 

September 2003

Local Government Responses to HIV/AIDS: A Handbook" is written for LGA (local government authority) mayors, councilors, advisors and officials that are interested in developing or strengthening local responses to HIV/AIDS. It provides information, examples, and illustrative tools (surveys, checklists, modules,etc.) that guide users through the steps of recognising and publicly acknowledging the importance of addressing HIV/AIDS, assessing the impact of HIV/AIDS on the locality, and identifying key stakeholders to initiate and coordinate a Local Government (LG) HIV/AIDS Response Strategy. The Handbook also focuses on the implementation process, and suggests ways to mobilise new and existing resources, develop productive relationships with civil society organisations (CSOs), and establish systems of monitoring, learning and evaluation. While it may not be reasonable to expect all LGAs to roll out extensive HIV/AIDS programmes, in general they can play an important role in identifying local needs, mainstreaming HIV/AIDS activities within LGA departments, and coordinating local responses (i.e. facilitating partnerships).

Much of the content of the Handbook is targeted towards LGAs in medium to large sized towns and cities. However,the Handbook can also be used by other levels of government (e.g. state or province) and in smaller towns. In all cases but particularly in smaller towns, it is recommended that a facilitator be appointed to work with LGA to adapt and implement the Handbook in a manner appropriate to the local context. This facilitator could directly supportone or more LGAs in working through the steps and tools set out in the Handbook.

While this Handbook is targeted at LGAs and does not deal directly with many intergovernmental issues, it is emphasised that nationalleaders, policies and frameworks play critical roles in enabling LG HIV/AIDS Responses. It is recommended that any local responses ideally occur within the context of co-operative governance, wherein national and local governments have a common understanding of their respective roles and actively collaborate with each other. As such, the Handbook can be used to encourage national governments to recognise the value of LG contributions to the fight against HIV/AIDS as well spur national associations of LGAs to support HIV/AIDS activities by their members. There are, however, many actions in the Handbook that are geared to assist LGAs to address HIV/AIDS even in less conducive national contexts.

Click here for more information. The Handbook is available in print, CD-rom and on the Website in PDF format. The Handbook is available in English, French and Portuguese.
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