October 2006 saw the formal launch of the Joint Learning Initiative on Children and AIDS (JLICA). It was formed by two members of the European HIV/AIDS Funders Group, the Fondation François-Xavier Bagnoud and the Bernard van Leer Foundation, together with UNICEF, Harvard University and the Dutch government.
JLICA will engage practitioners, policymakers and scholars in collaborative research, analysis and problem-solving. Its goal is to protect the rights of children affected by HIV/AIDS by mobilizing the scientific evidence base and producing practical recommendations for policy and practice. It will work through four Learning Groups on strengthening families; community action; access to services and human rights; and social and economic policies. Each Learning Group will produce a final report by May 2008, with an overall JLICA report to be produced by the end of that year.
Founded in Brussels in 2002, the European HIV/AIDS Funders Group is a European-based affinity network of foundations engaged in the field of HIV/AIDS whose aim is to strengthen European philanthropy in the fight against the disease.
The Group has recently released a report, European Philanthropy and HIV/AIDS, an investigation into current European resourcing for HIV/AIDS. The report analyses information gathered from 45 Europe-based foundations working in this field and was launched at the International HIV/AIDS Conference in August. The report found that European foundations’ AIDS funding had tripled between 2004 and 2006, to about €81 million, and also encouraged European foundations to coordinate their funding more strategically and to move from making many small grants to making larger, high-leverage ones.
The Group is also planning to expand its remit across the Atlantic, collaborating with the US-based Funders Concerned About AIDS (FCAA), with whom it co-organized the August conference. The aim is to harmonize its findings with similar US data to provide a coherent overview of HIV/AIDS funding in the US and Europe.