Aidsfonds Call for proposals to reduce Violence against Sex Workers in Zambia

Deadline: 31-Aug-23

Aidsfonds is inviting organisations led by sex workers for the Hands Off programme to work on reducing violence against sex workers in Southern Africa at community, national and regional level and step towards the better health and rights for them.

Aidsfonds is working towards a world without AIDS and help everyone living with or affected by HIV/AIDS. The main is to ensure that everyone has access to prevention, treatment, care and support. At the same time, funding for scientific research contributes to advances in the understanding of AIDS.

It is increasingly recognised that societal barriers, such as stigma, discrimination, and gender based violence, hinder access for key populations to HIV prevention and need to be addressed to get on track to end AIDS by 2030. The risk of acquiring HIV is 26 times higher for female sex workers than for other adult women, 34 times higher for transgender women than for other adults, and 25 times higher for gay men and other men who have sex with men than for heterosexual adult men. Largescale research shows that if violence against sex workers is tackled, can prevent up to 25 percent of new HIV infections.

Hands Off Goals
An empowered, resilient, and united sex worker movement demands its rightsEmpowerment of community organisations to work together toward a common advocacy goal (campaigns, networks, partnerships etc.)Organisational capacity strengthening (financial, governance, (young) leadership, programme management, monitoring and evaluation, fundraising, communications, registration, resource mobilisation).Capacity strengthening for meaningful involvement of young, male and transgender sex workers.Rights literacy training, Movement building, provide safe spaces for sex workers.

Rights literacy training, Movement building, provide safe spaces for sex workers.
Increased access to and use of justice and health systems inclusive for all sex workersStrengthening and providing community-led prevention, care & health services (peer outreach, peer education, paralegal, peer-based psychosocial support, helplines, emergency response systems, rapid response systems).

Providing access to right-based health and psychosocial services (service mapping, training health and social professionals, providing sex worker friendly health care services, assess and score health care and wellbeing facilities).Increasing sex workers’ access to justice and legal systems (providing legal support, training judiciary.

A more supportive, enabling and inclusive environment for sex workersCommunities provide input/co-write guidelines towards a policy change including policy development, blocking legislation, adoption of policies, change criminalizing laws and policies. Or contribute to the implementation of existing laws and policies.Sex workers influence attitude of government actors and decision makers and voice their concerns in networks and/or towards donors.Campaigns and training to advance sex workers’ rights, address/reduce human rights violations, advocate for legal reform, gender injustices, stigma and discrimination against sex workers in society, health care settings, media, religious community, law enforcement etc.Campaigns, media monitoring, media sensitisation, training of faith-based and community leaders, strengthened relationships with religious leaders, community support groups, community crisis response groups, capturing and documenting human rights violations, research, evidence for advocacy.

Sex workers are protected and served by law enforcementWorking on safe sex work locations and respectful behaviour between police and sex workers (strengthen partnerships, paralegal support in engaging with police, police sensitisation at station level, joint outreach to hotspots).
Empowering young key populationsYoung people, especially young sex workers (18-29 years) in all their diversity, continue to be disproportionately affected by HIV. Hands Off aims to strengthen leadership of young people within sex worker movements e.g. by partnering with youth-led networks; fostering meaningful participation and youth leadership; and advocate for tailor-made interventions for young people within sex workers communities. Aidsfonds strongly encourages proposals that focus on young sex workers.

Digitalisation and climate changeThe use of digital tools among sex workers is increasing due to the increasing availability of the internet and online platforms. Aidsfonds encourages activities that include digital service delivery, or promote the online safety of sex workers. In its work, Aidsfonds also aims to address the impact of climate change on public health. Activities to make sex worker-led organisations more sustainable and climate resilient will be welcomed.

Hands Off partnershipBecoming part of the Hands Off programme goes beyond just receiving a grant. As an organisation, you become part of the Hands Off partnership with specific requirements and obligations (e.g. documenting Human Rights Violations against sex workers), but also opportunities, such as peer to peer learning, participation in partner meetings with other partners from the region and (sub)- regional advocacy.


Hands Off partnership
Becoming part of the Hands Off programme goes beyond just receiving a grant. As an organisation, you become part of the Hands Off partnership with specific requirements and obligations (e.g. documenting Human Rights Violations against sex workers), but also opportunities, such as peer to peer learning, participation in partner meetings with other partners from the region and (sub)- regional advocacy.

Funding Information
Your application can include a maximum amount of €45.000 for the full period (1 January – 31 December 2024), or €20.000 (small grant) for unregistered or young organisations (established after 31 August 2021). The total available amount under this call is €90.000. They anticipate funding 1-3 applications to implement the Hands Off programme in Zambia in 2024. Extension of the grant until mid-2026 is possible depending on the progress made.

Eligibility Criteria
Your organisation is led by members of the sex worker community.
Organisations which are not sex worker-led are (only) considered when:
They are hosting community-led organisations
They are a network of community-led organisations and serving sex workers
Your organisation is a not-for-profit organisation engaged in HIV and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in Zambia for at least 6 months
Your organisation can operate at community, national and regional level.


Eligibility Criteria
  • Your organisation is led by members of the sex worker community.
  • Organisations which are not sex worker-led are (only) considered when:
    • They are hosting community-led organisations
    • They are a network of community-led organisations and serving sex workers
  • Your organisation is a not-for-profit organisation engaged in HIV and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in Zambia for at least 6 months
  • Your organisation can operate at community, national and regional level.

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