UNICEF managed to contribute to unique results registered in CEE/CIS countries:
At regional CEE/CIS level
- Contributed to the strengthening of the sub-regional harm reduction network (The Human Rights and Treatment Collaborative Networking on HIV/AIDS and Drug Use in Southeastern European). This builds on previous experience for assessing national situations on HIV and most-at-risk-adolescents (MARA) in Southeastern European countries (Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina);
- Assisted in improving national and regional level advocacy for HIV prevention among MARA through a regional inter-country consultation entitled “Counting Lives,” involving representatives of non-governmental organisations active in the area of HIV prevention in 10 Balkan countries;
- Strengthened the capacity of national and regional networks of HIV-positive young people from 4 countries by promoting socio-professional integration of YPLWHA in the Youth Consultation in 2007;
- Engagement in the development of a multi-country project aims to strengthen the national capacity to deliver an essential package of interventions to adolescent boys and girls already engaging in risky behaviour. The programme has been designed in such a way that lessons learned will be shared with other countries in the region, to allow a greater number to benefit from the experience.
At national level
- Promoted increased quality and comprehensiveness of National Strategy on HIV/AIDS. Evaluations of previous strategies, as well as updating information in terms of a regional perspective, ensured qualitative input for the new strategy, including focus on prevention of HIV among most vulnerable and at-risk groups, as well as most-at-risk-adolescents;
- Assisted in the national strengthening of the Voluntary Counselling and Testing Centres (VCTC) services network. VCTV activities have been taken over by the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and national coverage is expected by 2009;
- Contributed to an enhanced national response for Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission. (PMTCT) is currently an integrated part of the pre-natal care service, of which counselling and testing for pregnant women is now a mandatory element of the first pre-natal care visit, some 220,000 per year;
- Strengthened the capacity for strategic planning and using evidence-based information. Development of a baseline study on most-at-risk adolescents was initiated as part of a multi-country project on HIV prevention among MARA, and was implemented by Romanian institutions and experts with technical support from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine;
- Accumulated experience and lessons learned for a multi-sectoral approach and strategic planning in the area of HIV/AIDS. Sharing experience and learning from others is essential for the development of appropriate national and regional responses. Technical assistance and an experience sharing mission were arranged for Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova, and Belarus to enable them to learn more about Romania’s achievements, success stories, and lessons learned.
At children’s level
- Promoted increased knowledge among adolescents to protect themselves against HIV. By late 2004, 96% of 15-19 year-old boys and 90% of girls in this age group knew that using condoms is a way to avoid HIV/AIDS transmission; 64% of 15-24 year- old males and 24% of females reported that a condom was used during the last intercourse, with higher levels among single young men (71%) and women (38%);
- Fostered increased participation of adolescents and young people living with HIV/AIDS in the development of the strategy, with a particular focus on access to health and education services, and fighting stigma and discrimination;
- Increased capacity of Romanian networks of Young People Living with HIV/AIDS. A group of YPLWHA developed a concrete plan of advocacy interventions, with a some of these helping to finalize a 3-year strategy and plan of action (2007-2009) to strengthen the YPLWHA network and increase and improve their direct participation in the national response to fight HIV/AIDS;
- Successful project initiatives in the area of youth participation and social, school and professional integration of YPLWHA.