Multi-Country South Asia Global Fund HIV Program

Save the Children as Principal Recipient (PR) and with its Sub-Recipients has been implementing the Multi Country South Asia (MSA) Global Fund HIV program supported by Global Fund in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka since January 2011 to support the development and strengthening of community-based organizations (CBOs) and systems of multiple countries, to address the impact of, and vulnerability to HIV of men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender (TG) population in the region. This grant has started in 2011. Phase-I (2011-2013) of this grant had implemented by PSI’s PRship. Then, the United Nations Development Programme Bangkok Regional Hub (UNDP BRH) served the role of PR in its Phase-II (2013 Jul-2015 Dec) of the grant implementation.

Regional level support to CBOs and CSOs working on these issues has already produced positive results. Building upon lessons learned, Save the Children and with its Sub-Recipients provide extensive local/regional level supports to CBOs and civil society organizations (CSOs). As a result they can deliver high quality services, engage in policy development and advocacy initiatives, and take part in research on HIV-related issues affecting MSM and transgender people including operations research to improve program activities. 

The program aims to scale-up trainings, advocacy and other capacity building initiatives focused on MSM and TG-related community system strengthening and health system strengthening; and also focuses to bolster regional mechanisms to support in-country activities more effectively, while also reinforcing south-south collaboration and activities.


To reduce the impact of HIV on MSM and TG population, by improving the provision of comprehensive HIV prevention, care and support services to them in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka


  • To improve the delivery of HIV prevention, care and treatment services for MSM and transgender populations in South Asia
  • To improve the policy environment with regards MSM, transgender, and HIV-related issues in South Asia; and
  • To improve strategic information about the impact of HIV on MSM and transgender populations in South Asia


  • MSM and
  • Transgender/hijra population


  • Strengthening of CBOs and CSOs and their institutional development (In all countries)
  • Behavior change communication and community outreach (in Afghanistan and Pakistan)
  • Condom distribution (in Afghanistan and Pakistan)
  • HIV testing and counseling (in Afghanistan and Pakistan)
  • Sexually transmitted infections diagnosis and treatment (in Afghanistan and Pakistan)
  • Advocacy and policy development (in all countries)
  • Development and dissemination of strategic information, including biological, behavioral, and psycho-social research (in all countries)
  • Program operations research (in all countries)


  • Supporting national-level MSM and transgender CBOs/CSOs addressing HIV-related issues within MSM and transgender populations, to undertake policy and advocacy work, strengthen service provision, generate knowledge and build their organizational capacity to support other MSM and transgender CBOs and resource mobilization and sustainability activities
  • Where no national-level MSM, transgender and HIV CBO/CSO exist, developing such organizations, and supporting them to undertake necessary policy and advocacy work, generating knowledge, and strengthening service provision so that MSM and transgender population can access and use appropriate HIV-related services
  • In addition, these organizations will further support local MSM and transgender CBOs providing HIV-related services to MSM and transgender population at a local level, including a CSS and seed funding activity
  • Carrying out multi-country research, including operational research, to build knowledge about both the vulnerabilities of MSM and transgender people to HIV, and the impact of HIV on them, and to help develop good practice models on activities addressing these issues across the region
  • Country level studies will also be carried out to build the strategic knowledge to strengthen the national HIV responses for MSM and transgender population

Major Achievements made so far (January to September 2017)

  • Service delivery provision in Afghanistan and Pakistan has reached over 45,000 key populations (MSM and TG people) through prevention activities. Almost 17,000 KPs were tested and knew their HIV status among them 339 KPs were diagnosed HIV positive. More than 5,700 KPs were diagnosed and treated for sexually transmitted infections. Around 0.8 million condoms were distributed among key populations and promoted safer behaviors
  • More than 4,400 community workers and health workers were trained on different aspects related to HIV services such as advocacy and networking, stigma reduction at community and healthcare setting. More than 1,400 community people and stakeholders attended consultation, advocacy and networking and coordination meetings
  • In Nepal, regional grant worked closely with National Human Rights Commission, political parties, Law/lawyers bar association, and national stakeholders to implement the endorsed bills and policies.
  • As a result of joint advocacy efforts, government has recognized joint advocacy efforts; Government has recognized third gender populations as X in Bangladeshi passport. Joint effort of SRs in Pakistan resulted in endorsement of transgender rights protection bill 2017 in senate.
  • National AIDS Control Program and State AIDS control program in India authorized MSA sub recipients (SRs) to build capacity of all CBOs in catchment area to improve quality of interventions
  • Regional SR-APCOM contributed in build technical capacity of MSA national SRs on various aspects including knowledge management, program management and coordination.
  • Conducted evaluation of access to, availability and satisfaction of KPs (MSM and TG people) with HIV prevention, testing and other services  in Pakistan Nepal, Bangladesh and Afghanistan and findings will be utilized for national responses
  • Collaborated with regional CCM steering committee to conduct regional steering committee meeting to exchange information and promote good governance practices to boost up leadership and proactive roles in the national and regional response to HIV epidemic among key populations.
  • Expanded geographical coverage with HIV service delivery program among male with high risk behaviors and integrated Hep B with HIV program for key populations in Afghanistan
  • Exchanging learning and empirical experience of HIV programme intervention and policy advocacy for LGBTI community with policy makers, government official, key stakeholders and partner organization, the cross learning exposure visit from Afghanistan and Pakistan delegates representing from Parliamentary members, Commissioner, Human Rights Activists, Ministry of Public Health, National AIDS Control Programme was jointly facilitated by Blue Diamond Society and SCI. It enabled us to enrich theoretical, practical and behavioral aspects of the programme implementation through mutual indulgent.



Country          Organization 

Afghanistan   Youth Health and Development Organization (YHDO)

Bangladesh    Bandhu Social Welfare Society (BSWS)

Bhutan           Lhak-Sham

                      National AIDS Control Program (NACP)

India              The Humsafar Trust (HST)

                      Voluntary Health Servicse (VHS)

Nepal             Blue Diamond Society (BDS)

Pakistan         Dareecha Male Health Society

                      Dostana Male Health Society

                      Humraz Male Health Society

                      Khawaja Sira Society

                      Parwaz Male Health Society

                      Pireh Male Health Society

Sri Lanka        Family Planning Association (FPA)

Thailand         APCOM (Regional Network)