The Advocacy Fellows Program is a project of AVAC. It is designed to support emerging and mid-career advocates to design and implement advocacy projects focused on HIV prevention research and implementation in their countries and communities. Advocacy Fellows carry out their projects while based at “Host Organisations” that are active partners in the Fellows Program process. AVAC provides technical and financial support to Fellows—both salary and project budget—for the duration of the Fellow’s year (April 2019 – March 2020). This round of applications will recruit the tenth cadre of Advocacy Fellows. Sixty-three (63) Fellows have been awarded from 2010 to 2018. The 2018 Fellows are currently implementing their advocacy projects.
Goal of the Advocacy Fellows Program
The overall goal of Advocacy Fellows is to expand and strengthen the capacity of civil society advocates and organisations to monitor, support and help shape HIV prevention research and rapid rollout of new effective interventions in low- and middle-income countries with high HIV burdens. The program is guided by the belief that effective, sustainable advocacy grows out of work that reflects country level organisational and individual interests and priorities and is led by passionate advocates who are motivated to bring change. The Fellows program is implemented through a close collaboration among the Advocacy Fellow, the Host Organisation and AVAC.
2019 Advocacy Fellows Program
The Advocacy Fellows Program will run for one year, from April 2019 to March 2020. Selected Advocacy Fellows should also plan to spend a few days working closely with AVAC and their hosts to develop their work plans before the Fellows Program year begins.
Fellows Program provide
The Fellows Program provides:
- Mentoring and capacity building in HIV prevention research and implementation advocacy from AVAC for both Advocacy Fellows and Host Organisations.
- Connection to a global network of HIV advocates including current and former Advocacy Fellows, researchers, civil society leaders and other individuals and/or Organisations working in similar fields.
- Opportunities for networking and information sharing with other Advocacy Fellows and a broader community of advocates including activists, scientists, clinical trial staff and other stakeholders working in the HIV movement.
- A small stipend and technical assistance for the selected Advocacy Fellow for the initial development of a detailed work plan (up to three days over a maximum of two months). This phase takes place before the official Fellows Program year begins.
- Financial support and technical assistance from AVAC for project implementation over 12 months. Through a grant to the Host organisation, the Fellow will receive full-time salary support, a budget for project execution and access to a discretionary fund for specific travel, infrastructure or and information technology (IT) needs. (Please note that in some very specific circumstances, Fellows can be permitted to commit less than 100 percent to the Fellows Programs. These arrangements must be raised early on in the process. Please see Question 20 below)
- Overhead administration funding to the Host Organisation to cover costs associated with hosting a Fellow will also be included in the Grant. Overhead costs are those that are incurred by the Organisation to administer the grant that cannot be directly attributed to the Fellows Program activity (for example, proportion of rent, phone, some personnel costs such as executive director, accounting and administrative staff time) and calculated as a percentage of the overall grant.
The Advocacy Fellows Program seeks the following:
- Emerging or mid-career community leaders and advocates involved or interested in advocacy around HIV prevention research and implementation.
- Individuals with some experience or education in the areas of HIV and AIDS, public health, medicine, international development, women’s rights, communications, or advocacy with key populations, such as sex workers, LGBTQI individuals and drug users.
- Individuals based in low- and middle-income countries with high HIV burdens and where biomedical HIV prevention clinical research is planned and or ongoing and/or where there is current work on implementation of newer biomedical prevention strategies (such as pre-exposure prophylaxis or PrEP, treatment on demand, VMMC and multiintervention programs such as the DREAMS Initiative for adolescent girls and young women or AGYW.) Advocates can also develop proposals that seek to catalyze plans and policies in countries where little activity on these issues has happened to date.
- Those proficient in the English language. Applications are encouraged from all countries where biomedical prevention research is ongoing or rolling out, however the Advocacy Fellow and key staff at her/his Organisation must be able to communicate with AVAC staff in English.
- Demonstrated awareness of and willingness to learn about ongoing prevention research and implementation in their respective countries, although extensive knowledge in biomedical HIV prevention is not required. They must also be able to demonstrate strategic analysis of how Fellows Program activities will relate to local prevention landscapes.
DATE STEPS IN THE ADVOCACY FELLOWS PROGRAM PROCESS
- 18 July 2018 Call for 2019 Fellows Applications open
- 7 August 2018 Informational teleconference for potential applicants
- 7 September 2018 Deadline – Applications Due Early
- October 2018 Shortlisted applicants notified regarding advancement to next stage. Additional financial information from the Host Organization is due 2 weeks after notification.
- October 2018 Interviews with short-listed candidates and Host Organisation representatives
- October – November 2018 External independent review process
- December 2018 Selected Advocacy Fellows notified
- December 2018 – March 2019 Work plan and budget development; preparation and signing of grant agreement. A total of three days over two months is required for the process. This may be undertaken while the Advocacy Fellow is still employed, if applicable, in her/his current position. Please also note that full participation in work plan development activities including conference calls and timely submission of documents is required. Fellows Program offers are provisional until the grant agreement is signed.
- April 2019 – March 2020 Advocacy Fellows Program (full-time)
- April 2019 Fellows Orientation Workshop: The workshop introduces and orients new Advocacy Fellows and Host Organisation Supervisors into the program, and provides an opportunity for networking and building peer/mentor relationships among new Advocacy Fellows, alumni and Host Organisations