Innovative financing, such as blended financing, have been increasingly gaining popularity among global health institutions. Many believe that innovative financing (instead of traditional foreign aid programs) is the direction that development world should be heading into. However there are very polarized and black-and-white narratives around innovative financing: either the models are being promoted as an alternative to development assistance (esp. in MICs) , and they are inherently positive; or there are critiques to do with dominant economic models that have been destructive to developing countries (indebtedness, conditionalities, SAPs, etc.).

For communities who are living with HIV and key population, the big question remains: in the era of blended financing, where loans are given to governments which will then make programs supported by it as government programs, what are the role of communities and key population in shaping policies and programs? What are the program components that will be funded through innovative financing? Are controversial and politically sensitive populations will still able to benefit from innovative financing arrangements? If not, then who is actually benefiting from such financing models? These questions remain unanswered partly as innovative financing is mostly new initiatives in the particular area.

Obviously, when discussing different types of innovative financing, one size won’t fit all. In which context can loan-buy down work? How can we maximise the impact of social bonds and ensure communities and key population benefit from the approach? Where does result-based financing sit in the whole innovative financing framework? These are the questions that civil society, communities and key population need to collectively respond to and for that, we need the space to start discussing it.

The meeting aims to gather civil society activists, communities and key populations to increase awareness around innovative financing and its models (and mechanisms), provide space to discuss support, concerns and plan their advocacy on the topic strategically.

CSSN will be co-hosting this meeting with The Global Network of People Living with HIV (GNP+) and APCASO.

Time and Place

We still yet to determine the place for the meeting. It is expected that the meeting will happen between January-February 2018.