Anglican Communion Office at the United Nations (ACOUN) - HIVAIDS

Statement of the Anglican Communion to the 53rd Commission on the Status of Women

Theme: The equal sharing of responsibilities between women and men including care-giving in the context of HIV/AIDS


We, the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) with over 50 women delegates drawn from 30 countries attending the 53rd Commission on the status of women in March 2009 and representing millions of women and girls whose voices are neglected most of the time;

Taking cognizance that there is need for uplifting dignity of person as well as renewal of creation, advocating for equity and economic justice as values and norms which underpin the understanding of economic being which this institution observes;

Noting with great concern that the care economy, especially the household is neglected in budgeting and planning for access to resources, yet women and girls provide most of the care needed by the sick, elderly and People leaving with HIV/AIDS;  

Noting further that the financial crisis has hit us, our people and our nations; and that gender budgeting is a tool we can use to plan for gender responsive increase in access to resources and services in relation to the different needs of females and males;

Acknowledging that governments have the primary responsibility to ensure that all females and males equally enjoy their human rights as given in the international and regional human rights instruments and elimination of all forms of discrimination against women as provided in the Convention on elimination of all forms of discrimination against women (CEDAW);


Hereby urge governments to:

  1. Use existing social structures such as Community Development Centers, Faith Based Organizations (FOBs) due to their historical and operational connections with civil society and communities in general to:
    • provide basic clinical training for care givers
    • coordinate administrative arrangements for family-care giving
    • including care-giving in the context of HIV/AIDS, the elderly, children and the sick
    • serve as centers of excellence for sharing information about gender-related issues including women’s rights, public health and income generating activities
  2. Improve on resource and service provision that support food security, improved seeds, appropriate energy technologies, access to clean water to reduce the burden of work from women, increased access to preventive and curative health services and care of the elderly.
  3. Strengthen the capacity of community based organizations, civil society and faith based organizations to provide psycho-social support, counseling, institutional care in ways that eliminate stigma and discrimination in terms of gender, HIV/AIDS status, race or location.   
  4. Increase and improve on participation of faith based organizations in the planning, implementation and monitoring of international commitments to prevention, care and treatment of HIV/AIDS and build capacity of civil society organizations to influence decisions in formulation, implementation and monitoring of gender responsive HIV/AIDS policies and programmes.  
  5. Strengthen capacity of National Bureau of Statistics, research institutions and faith based organisations in all countries to undertake time-use surveys, especially through quantitative household surveys as well as qualitative case studies in ways that use gender focused methodologies that enable measurement of care that involve multitasking and division of labour among females and males.    

    Civil society organizations and private sector institutions to:

  7. Involve public and private partnerships in strategies to address the financial crisis, especially the asset component of such crisis where economic as well as social products, services and jobs are affected in ways that exacerbate gender inequalities.
  8. Advise, influence decisions and monitor government commitments to financing, service provision and resource access to People Leaving with HIV/AIDS, those who provide care services, counseling and Pycho social provision and ensure that such service providers are acknowledged in society and institutions.

    Donors, multilateral and international financial institutions to ensure:

  10. Development financing and technical assistance to health, agriculture, housing/shelter and other key sectors that are impacted upon by HIV/AIDS, should be provided in relation to the different needs of females and males, in transparent and accountable ways and ensure that allocation of such financing takes into consideration the need to build capacities of those who provide care services, and improvement in their accessibility to income, energy services, and other services which require a lot of time-use and heavy workload.