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The Global Fund opens its eighth funding round

03 March 2008

Geneva – The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria today began accepting proposals for a new funding round, emphasizing the importance of scaling up service delivery to key affected populations and strengthening health systems. The Global Fund also recommends that both government and nongovernmental organizations be included as recipients of grants.

The deadline for Round 8 proposals is 1 July 2008 at 12:00 noon, Geneva (Switzerland) local time.

The submitted proposals are first screened for eligibility by the Secretariat and are then forwarded to an independent review panel, which assesses them for technical merit and consistency. A final decision on which proposals will be funded will be made by the Board of the Global Fund in November 2008.

The Global Fund is anticipating a significant increase in demand for resources in Round 8 as countries continue to scale up their national prevention and care efforts. Round 7, which was approved in November 2007, was the largest round to date for the organization, with 73 new grants approved worth more than US$ 1.1 billion over two years. Currently, approximately US$ 2 billion is forecast to be available for Round 8. This amount may increase as additional pledges from donors are made.

"Programs supported by the Global Fund are already making a difference worldwide, but much more needs to be done," said Dr Michel Kazatchkine, Executive Director of the Global Fund. "Antiretroviral therapy reaches only 30 percent of those in need and multidrug-resistant TB looms as a serious threat in many countries. A lot of people at risk of malaria still do not sleep under a bed net or do not have access to treatment. Now is the time for nations to aim high by mobilizing government, nongovernmental organizations and international partners and submitting even more ambitious proposals for Global Fund financing."

The Global Fund stressed that new proposals should emphasize how countries plan to reach key affected populations who often don’t have a strong voice, such as women, young girls and sexual minorities.

Weak health systems are a major bottleneck in the effort to fight the three diseases in resource-poor countries. There is a major gap in funding for health systems and the human resources needed to scale up the response to AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. In this round, the Global Fund is encouraging grant applicants, wherever possible, to integrate requests for funding for interventions that strengthen health systems within the relevant disease component(s) of their proposal.

The Global Fund recognizes that civil society and the private sector play an important role in the development of proposals and in ensuring the delivery of services to key affected populations. Starting from this funding round, the Global Fund recommends the routine inclusion in proposals of Principal Recipients from both government and non-government organizations.

“The private sector and civil society have already proven that they are strong partners in efforts to increase the reach of services at the community level," said Rajat Gupta, Chair of the Global Fund Board. “The Round 8 focus on encouraging non-government Principal Recipients enhances the opportunities for nongovernmental organizations to become full partners in the planning and implementation of comprehensive responses to the diseases."

Proposals submitted should be based on a comprehensive needs assessment – including efforts to scale up access to key prevention services for the three diseases through both public and non-public implementers.

Guidelines and proposal forms are available on the Global Fund's website.

To help applicants in proposal preparation, the Global Fund has created an online “Round 8 Call for Proposals” Forum on http://myglobalfund.org/ to supplement the information provided directly from the Secretariat. The website provides applicants with the opportunity to benefit from real-time questions and answers and to share lessons learned regarding proposal development.

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