Global Fund Overview

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The Global Fund / John Rae

The Global Fund is a 21st-century partnership organization designed to accelerate the end of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria as epidemics.

Founded in 2002, the Global Fund is a partnership between governments, civil society, the private sector and people affected by the diseases. The Global Fund raises and invests nearly US$4 billion a year to support programs run by local experts in countries and communities most in need.

Working together, we have saved millions of lives and provided prevention, treatment and care services to hundreds of millions of people, helping to revitalize entire communities, strengthen local health systems and improve economies.

A smart investment

In 2000, AIDS, TB and malaria appeared to be unstoppable. In many countries, AIDS devastated an entire generation, leaving countless orphans and shattered communities. Malaria killed young children and pregnant women unable to protect themselves from mosquitoes or access life-saving medicine. TB unfairly afflicted the poor, as it had for millennia.

The world fought back. As a partnership of governments, the private sector, civil society and people affected by the diseases, the Global Fund pooled the world’s resources to invest strategically in programs to end AIDS, TB and malaria as epidemics.

"The Global Fund is one of the best and kindest things people have ever done for one another. It is a fantastic vehicle for scaling up the treatments and preventive tools we have today – to make sure they reach the people who need them."
Bill Gates at the Opening Ceremony of the 16th International AIDS Conference

A 21st-century partnership

The Global Fund partnership model is designed to promote innovative solutions to global health challenges. Countries take the lead in determining where and how to best fight AIDS, TB and malaria. Collectively, the Global Fund harnesses the best possible experience, insights and innovation in the public and private sectors to respond to diseases and build resilient and sustainable systems for health.

Results that matter

Smart, effective health investments through the Global Fund have saved 27 million lives, expanding opportunities and achieving greater social justice for families and communities worldwide.

Scientific advances, innovative ideas and private sector savvy are unlocking improvements in disease prevention, treatment and care. Millions of people are now on antiretroviral therapy and spared the death sentence that used to come with HIV. The number of people dying of malaria, most of them young children, has been cut in half. New diagnostics systems are speeding up the testing and treatment of people with TB.

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The Global Fund / John Rae

Where programs are

Learn more about our partnership's programs and impact by country or region on our Grant Portfolio.



The only way to end AIDS, TB and malaria as epidemics is by working together: Governments, civil society, communities affected by the diseases, technical partners, the private sector, faith-based organizations, and other funders. All those involved in the response to the diseases should be involved in the decision-making process.

Country ownership

People implementing programs on the ground know best how to respond to AIDS, TB and malaria in their local contexts. Country ownership means that people determine their own solutions to fighting these three diseases, and take full responsibility for them. Each country tailors its response to the political, cultural and epidemiological context.

Performance-based funding

Programs need to have proven, effective and time-bound results in order to receive continued funding. Local Fund Agents carefully monitor and verify program performance and results.


The Global Fund operates with a high degree of transparency in all of its work, including applications for funding, funding decisions, grant performance, results, governance and oversight. All audits and investigations by the Office of the Inspector General are openly published. The Global Fund also fully supports and participates in the International Aid Transparency Initiative.

Core structures


Our Board sets strategy, governs the institution and approves all funding decisions. It is also responsible for assessing organizational performance, overall risk management, partner engagement, resource mobilization and advocacy. The Board includes members from donor and implementer governments, non-governmental organizations, the private sector, private foundations and affected communities.

Country Coordinating Mechanism

Each implementing country establishes a national committee, or Country Coordinating Mechanism, to submit requests for funding on behalf of the entire country, and to oversee implementation once the request has become a signed grant. Country Coordinating Mechanisms include representatives of every sector involved in the response to the diseases.


The staff of the Global Fund are responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Global Fund, primarily managing grants. All staff are based in Geneva, Switzerland.

Technical Review Panel

An independent body of health, development and finance experts, the Technical Review Panel evaluates the technical merit of all requests for funding.

Local Fund Agent

Local Fund Agents are independent consultants who assess implementation and data. As the Global Fund does not have offices in country, Local Fund Agents serve as eyes and ears on the ground.

Principal Recipient

Principal Recipients are responsible for implementing grants, including coordination of other, smaller organizations, known as sub-recipients. Principal Recipients take on the financial as well as the programmatic responsibilities of the grant.

Office of the Inspector General

Oversight and assurance are also provided by the Office of the Inspector General, an independent body reporting directly to the Board that works to ensure that the Global Fund invests in the most effective way possible and to reduce the risk of misused funds.

History of the Global Fund

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria was created in 2002 to raise, manage and invest the world’s money to respond to three of the deadliest infectious diseases the world has ever known. The mission of the Global Fund is to invest the world’s money to defeat these three diseases.

The idea for the Global Fund arose from a wellspring of grass-roots political advocacy coming face-to-face with the imperatives of global leadership. AIDS, TB and malaria are all preventable and treatable – but solving this problem requires the commitment not only of world leaders and decision-makers but also of those working on the ground to help the men, women and children living with these diseases.

“When I first mooted the idea of the Global Fund, people said I was dreaming… I love dreams. It always starts with a dream.”
Kofi Annan, former Secretary-General of the United Nations

The idea was discussed at a G8 summit in Okinawa, Japan, in 2000. The real commitment began to coalesce at the African Union summit in April 2001, continued at the United Nations General Assembly Special Session in June of that year, and was finally endorsed by the G8 at their summit in Genoa, Italy, in July 2001. A Transitional Working Group was established to determine the principles and working modalities of the new organization, and the Global Fund came into being in January 2002.

Published 07 June 2018