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The meeting of EECA regional networks and community organizations representatives is held in Tallinn today, focused on discussing the concept of the campaign to be launched on the eve of the XXII International AIDS Conference 2018.

The main goal of the campaign is to mobilize global and comprehensive support to the EECA countries to stabilize the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the region through coordinating the work of the PLWH, PUD, MSM, transgender and SW communities, paying special attention to adolescents and women from these groups.

As early as 2010, communities of people living with HIV from 15 countries of Eastern Europe and Central Asia came together to draw the attention of 25,000 participants of the XVIII International AIDS Conference to the critical situation with the HIV epidemic in EECA countries. From the very beginning of the conference, the advocacy campaign “EECA PLWH: Less of us are dying, but we are dying faster” was initiated. A statue of ice was mounted in the very center of the Global Village. As it melted, every drop falling from it meant one more life of a child or adult claimed by the HIV epidemic in the EECA countries, which can be taken under control. In 2010, the situation in the region came to higher prominence at the international level than it used to be years earlier. The EECA community managed to involve the international community to directly participate in response to the challenges of the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

ECUO initiated a new regional campaign scheduled to start by to AIDS 2018 Conference, also focusing on complex issues faced by the countries of the Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Regional organizations – the Eurasian Coalition for Male Health (ECOM); Eurasian Harm Reduction Association (EHRA); Eurasian Network of People Who Use Drugs (ENPUD); Eurasian Women’s AIDS Network (EWAN); Sex Workers’ Rights Advocacy Network (SWAN); Teenergizer Union of Youth and Adolescents and EECA Alliance of SWs supported the initiative and are directly involved in the campaign development.

In preparation for the campaign, a list of potential speakers for AIDS 2018 has already been formed and key challenges for the regional communities of EECA have been summarized. The campaign messages and its preparation and implementation plan are discussed today at a meeting of the working group in Tallinn with the financial support of the Global Fund in the framework of the regional project “Partnership for equal access to the continuum of HIV-related services for all who need it in the EECA region”.

After the development of the concept of the campaign, its goals and messages, all interested parties will be able to join and support the campaign of the communities of the EECA region.

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