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Investing in Communities Achieves Results

Investing in Communities Achieves Results

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Reliable evidence on the results of investments at the community level is in short supply. While communities have played a large role in the HIV/AIDS response, their contributions and innovative approaches to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support have not always been the focus of systematic and rigorous evaluations. To address this gap, seventeen analytical pieces were undertaken including evaluations in Burkina Faso, India, Kenya, Lesotho, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa and Zimbabwe over a three -year period (early 2009 to early 2012) to build a robust pool of evidence on the effects of community based activities and programs. Due to the complexity and varied nature of community responses, the evaluation attempted to determine the results that investments have produced at the community level by applying a mixed method approach: Randomized Control Trials (RCT), quasi-experimental studies, qualitative studies, and analytical studies including financial data. Specifically, the studies examined a typology of community response and the flow of funds to community based organizations, while investigating the impact of the community responses on (i) knowledge and behavior, (ii) use of services, (iii) social transformation, and (iv) HIV incidence. Evaluation findings indicate that investments in communities have produced significant results at the community level, which contribute to outcomes at the national level, all while leveraging limited resources.
A unique feature of this multi-country evaluation is the collaboration between the World Bank and the UK DFID and of these agencies with a major civil society network: The UK Consortium on AIDS and International Development. Another key feature is the sustained consultation process with civil society and stakeholders at the local, national and global levels.
The book’s findings are promising: At varying levels, ranging from causal to suggestive evidence, depending on the country context, the HIV response in communities can improve knowledge and behavior, and increase the use of health services, and even decrease HIV incidence. Evidence on social transformation was more mixed, with community groups found to be effective only in some settings. Each study in the evaluation provides a partial view of how communities shape the local response; however, taken together they constitute a significant pool of rigorous evidence on the contributions of communities, community groups and civil society to the national and global HIV/AIDS response.
Reliable evidence on the results of investments at the community level is in short supply. While communities have played a large role in the HIV/AIDS response, their contributions and innovative approaches to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support have not always been the focus of systematic and rigorous evaluations. To address this gap, seventeen analytical pieces were undertaken including evaluations in Burkina Faso, India, Kenya, Lesotho, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa and Zimbabwe over a three -year period (early 2009 to early 2012) to build a robust pool of evidence on the effects of community based activities and programs. Due to the complexity and varied nature of community responses, the evaluation attempted to determine the results that investments have produced at the community level by applying a mixed method approach: Randomized Control Trials (RCT), quasi-experimental studies, qualitative studies, and analytical studies including financial data. Specifically, the studies examined a typology of community response and the flow of funds to community based organizations, while investigating the impact of the community responses on (i) knowledge and behavior, (ii) use of services, (iii) social transformation, and (iv) HIV incidence. Evaluation findings indicate that investments in communities have produced significant results at the community level, which contribute to outcomes at the national level, all while leveraging limited resources.
A unique feature of this multi-country evaluation is the collaboration between the World Bank and the UK DFID and of these agencies with a major civil society network: The UK Consortium on AIDS and International Development. Another key feature is the sustained consultation process with civil society and stakeholders at the local, national and global levels.
The book’s findings are promising: At varying levels, ranging from causal to suggestive evidence, depending on the country context, the HIV response in communities can improve knowledge and behavior, and increase the use of health services, and even decrease HIV incidence. Evidence on social transformation was more mixed, with community groups found to be effective only in some settings. Each study in the evaluation provides a partial view of how communities shape the local response; however, taken together they constitute a significant pool of rigorous evidence on the contributions of communities, community groups and civil society to the national and global HIV/AIDS response.

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Publish date: Jan 22, 2013
Added to Scribd: Dec 03, 2012
Copyright:AttributionISBN:9780821397411

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02/05/2016

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9780821397411

This evaluation aimed to generate knowledge on the local response to HIV and
AIDS. The purpose of the evaluation was to (a) report HIV and AIDS results
achieved at the community level, (b) identify areas where investments can
achieve greater results, and (c) discuss critical policy and programmatic issues.
More specifically, this evaluation examined broad community-based activities,
services, and actions; specific interventions; and the flow of funds at the global
and community levels. It applies a definition of community understood in terms
of identity (men who have sex with men (MSM) and sex workers (SW), for
instance) as well as a community defined in terms of geographic location.

Using the hypothesis that the community response leads to community-based
results, and adds value to the national response, specific research questions were
selected based on the causal-logic theory of change model: that is, studying
how and why an initiative works, looking for changes in knowledge, behaviors,
practices, coverage, utilization of services, and HIV and AIDS-related health
outcomes along the continuum of prevention, treatment, care, support, and
mitigation. Quantitative, qualitative, and financial data were collected and
analyzed to provide a better understanding of the nuances of the findings.

Approach and Methodology

CHAPTER 2

30

Approach and Methodology

Investing in Communities Achieves Results • http://dx.doi.org/10.1596/978-0-8213-9741-1

One shortcoming of some earlier evaluations is that they focused on narrow
evaluations of broad programs or projects. They did not go far enough in explain-
ing what benefits accrued to communities and households by the combination
of activities at the community level. This evaluation aims to fill this void by
providing robust data on outcomes and impacts and examining possible explan-
atory factors that may affect the results.

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