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Key Populations and the COVID-19 Response Mechanism (C19RM) Overview

The COVID-19 Response Mechanism (C19RM) is the Global Fund’s response to COVID-19.

  • Published
  • 26 April 2021
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What is C19RM?

C19RM is the Global Fund response to COVID19. All countries that currently have a Global Fund grant are eligible to apply for funding to help reduce the impact of COVID-19 on HIV, TB and malaria programs and support urgent improvements in health and community systems.

Eligible investments in 2021:

  1. Actions to reinforce the response to COVID-19.
  2. Adapting HIV, TB, and Malaria programs to COVID-19 context in countries.
  3. Strengthening health and community systems.

By now, all CCMs should have received the C19RM allocation letters, which states how much funding has been allocated to your country (15% of the country’s 2020-2022 allocation). All C19RM funding requests should align to the funding request materials, guidelines and technical information notes found on the Global Fund’s website.

Why should Key Populations get involved in the C19RM process?

COVID-19 has severely impacted key populations, limiting their access to essential HIV and harm reduction programs around the world that are not community-led. Key populations have been denied access to social protection mechanisms and have struggled for food and shelter, experienced increased rates of stigma, discrimination and violence, and targeted by law enforcement, including through evictions and being rounded up in ‘quarantine’ centres. Key population-led groups fully stepped up during the pandemic, filling in the gaps of the health and social welfare systems, to ensure their communities survived. Therefore, it is critical that key populations are engaged in C19RM funding request development to ensure that community-led responses are funded to continue this work.

Global Fund COVID-19 Response Mechanism Guidelines call for consultations with “civil society, key and vulnerable populations as well as communities, including those most severely affected by COVID-19,” and you can refer your CCM to those guidelines if they question the need to consult key populations.

C19RM Guidance Hub for Key Populations

The C19RM Guidance Hub for Key Populations has been created by GATE, the Global Network of Sex Work Projects (NSWP), The International Network of People who Use Drugs (INPUD), and MPact Global Action for Gay Men’s Health and will be regularly updated.

Additionally, INPUD has created a page with Covid-19 Resources.