The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) is an innovative joint venture of the United Nations family. UNAIDS brings together the efforts and resources of eight United Nations system organizations to help the world prevent new HIV infections, care for those already infected, and mitigate the impact of the epidemic. Its aim is to help mount and support an expanded response to AIDS—one that engages the efforts of many sectors and partners from government and civil society. Established in 1994 by a resolution of the United Nations Economic and Social Council, and launched in January 1996, UNAIDS is guided by a Programme Coordinating Board with representatives of 22 governments from all geographic regions, the UNAIDS Cosponsors (UNICEF, UNDP, UNDCP,UNFPA, ILO, UNESCO, WHO and the World Bank), and 5 representatives of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), including associations of people living with HIV/AIDS.
The International Labour Organization (ILO) primary objective is to promote decent work and productive employment for all, based on the principles of social justice and equality. The ILO has a key role to play in preventing the spread of the AIDS epidemic and mitigating its impact in the world of work. In 2001, the ILO produced a Code of practice on HIV/AIDS and the world of work, which established principles for HIV/AIDS policies at enterprise, sectoral and national levels, and practical guidelines for programmes of prevention, care and support at the workplace.
The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) supports developing countries, at their request, to improve access to and the quality of reproductive health care, particularly family planning, safe motherhood, and prevention of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) including HIV/AIDS. It promotes safer sexual behaviour, empowering young women to refuse unwanted and unsafe sexual relations, and persuading young men to assume more responsibility by protecting themselves and their partners.
UNICEF has supported the development of life skills and health education curricula, training of teachers and the production of materials in developing countries. It is also promoting the rights of children with HIV/AIDS, children from families affected by HIV/AIDS, and pregnant schoolgirls to remain in school and to a safe, non-discrimination school environment.
(To Life skills section)
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the United Nations’ principal provider of development advice, advocacy and grant support. UNDP focuses on creating an enabling policy, legislative and resource environment for an effective response to HIV/AIDS. In other words, UNDP focuses on the governance challenge of planning, coordinating and implementing a multisectoral response to the epidemic.
The United Nations International Drug Control Programme (UNDCP) is entrusted with the exclusive responsibility for coordinating and providing effective leadership for all United Nations drug control activities. Through sexual contact, HIV infection is spread from the drug-using community to others. International drug control is therefore a vital tool for HIV prevention. In this context, UNDCP is active in supporting HIV/AIDS prevention programmes and including such components in its own programmes to reduce the demand for illicit drugs. Youth and high-risk groups are particularly targeted.
UNESCO's main approach in the field of education for the prevention of AIDS is to strengthen the capacities of Ministries of Education to implement or develop effective education programmes on HIV/AIDS prevention within the school system, to enhance their national capacities.
Also see UNESCO's action against HIV/AIDS
The World Health Organization (WHO promotes technical cooperation for health among nations, carries out programmes to control and eradicate disease and strives to improve the quality of human life. The Organization through the Global Programme on AIDS participes at the global effort to control the spread of HIV/AIDS.
The World Bank
The mandate of the World Bank is to alleviate poverty and improve quality of life. The World Bank has placed HIV/AIDS at the centre of its development agenda. In its policy dialogue with borrowing countries, the Bank stresses that HIV/AIDS is a development priority and highlights the need for top-level political commitment, systematic health-sector reforms, human rights protection, and a range of multisectoral reforms to help reduce the factors contributing to HIV spread.