UNAIDS toolkit and UNDP checklist for gender-transformative programming in NSPs

How can national AIDS planning bodies ensure that they are addressing the gender dimensions of HIV?

UNAIDS has developed a toolkit and UNDP a checklist to support the design of national strategic plans (NSPs) for submission to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria.

The NSP is a critical element in the eight-step process required by the Global Fund’s new funding model (NFM), initiated in 2013, with gender an essential component of the NSP. The UN Secretary-General’s 2012 report, ‘United to end AIDS: Achieving the targets of the 2011 Political Declaration’, noted that persistent gaps undermine national AIDS responses despite the many gains that have been made:

“Punitive laws, gender inequality, violence against women and other human rights violations … and declines in funding have the potential to jeopardize the capacity to expand access to HIV services and sustain progress over the coming years.”

Both UN agencies have drawn on best practices to encourage effective gender transformation within national AIDS responses.


UNAIDS’ gender assessment tool is intended to assist countries in applying a gender lens to their analysis of their HIV epidemic, context and response. In order to maximise gender-transformative responses, it is crucial to understand key populations, those who are most likely to be exposed to, or transmit, HIV. In most settings, higher risk individuals are:

  • men who have sex with men
  • transgendered people
  • people who inject drugs
  • sex workers and their clients
  • migrant workers
  • people in prison
  • women
  • sero-negative partners in sero-discordant couples


This checklist enables each country team to analyse whether they have integrated gender-transformative programming effectively within their NSP. UNDP provide specific steps and examples for each phase, from country dialogues, through proposal drafting to monitoring and evaluation.

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