Bay Area RESULTS News — January 2004

Media Success   Global Campaign 2004   Domestic Campaign 2004   Calendar

Media Success

In December, we generated two letter to the editor and an editorial in the Contra Costa Times, all on the topic of improving U.S. funding to fight international AIDS, TB, and malaria.

In 2003, we generated 6 editorials: one in the San Francisco Chronicle, one in the San Jose Mercury-News, one in the Sacramento Bee and three in the Contra Costa Times. We generated two radio interviews, both on KPFA-FM. We generated one article, which was in the San Francisco Chronicle. And we generated 16 letters to the editor. See Media Generated 2003 for more information.

Global Campaign for 2004

There will be three major RESULTS Global campaigns for 2004:

  1. Global Health
  2. School Fee elimination
  3. Microcredit

2004 Global Health — TB, TB/AIDS and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria (GFATM)

Politically, this is a very exciting time to be working on global health issues, especially HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. Although 2004 is an election year and it is likely that many issues important to us at RESULTS will be difficult to move forward because of the attention focused on presidential campaigns, there has been a steady increase in attention worldwide on the HIV/AIDS pandemic. We will be able to use this momentum to make even greater progress for global health in 2004.

Increasing support for and investment in universal access to effective TB treatment will not only address a major global health problem, but also help to eliminate a root cause of poverty and one of poverty's worst manifestations. TB remains the greatest curable infectious killer globally. TB is also a disease that disproportionately harms poor people and one that pushes families deeper into poverty. Expanding access to TB treatment programs can be expected to yield significant benefits explicitly for poor people — which is not the case for all or even most health interventions. In addition, in expanding an infrastructure to deliver a six to eight-month course of DOTS (Directly Observed Treatment, Short-course), the WHO recommended TB control program, we can help extend and strengthen a health service network that can be adapted for other health efforts such as the fight against AIDS.

The GFATM is the most important new funding mechanism for TB and malaria treatment and as the U.S. scales up AIDS programs, funding for the GFATM can help ensure quality TB and malaria investments as well.

Campaign Goals: Our 2004 campaign goals will include increased funding for lifesaving TB drugs (through the Global TB Drug Facility) and for using the remarkable India TB program as a model for rapidly scaling up TB efforts in other countries — this will help insure the best use of USAID TB monies. India has scaled up its TB program 40 fold in the last 4.5 years, treated 2.5 million patients and trained 300,000 health workers! We will also work to make the critical links between TB and HIV programs — pushing to include TB in the President's AIDS Initiative, and will continue to strongly support the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, as well as the WHO's campaign to expand AIDS treatment to 3 million by 2005. We will link this work to efforts on child survival and AIDS orphans.

2004 Campaign to Eliminate School Fees

Reducing barriers to school and increasing the number of children in school will help to eliminate a root cause of poverty and its on-going cycle. Education produces powerful and positive outcomes in economic productivity, health and social well-being, especially for girls (who represent the majority of the poor). In newly developing societies, each additional year of schooling beyond grade three or four can lead to:

Free and compulsory education is essential for societies to develop and flourish and school fees are the biggest barrier to poor children, AIDS orphans and girls attending school. Eliminating school fees will allow millions more children to attend school and will also provide an economic stimulus, not unlike a tax break, freeing up family income to purchase other critical goods and services.

Campaign Goals:Our 2004 campaign goals include providing funding as incentive for countries to eliminate school fees, increase enrollments — especially of girls and AIDS orphans — and scale up teacher recruitment and other actions to absorb millions more children. We will also work to impact World Bank and USAID policies on school fees and health fees so that these institutions proactively work to eliminate these fees.

2004 Microcredit Campaign

Nearly 1.2 billion people in the world live on less than $1 a day. Over 29,000 children die every day in poor countries, mostly from preventable diseases and malnutrition. Most of the very poor are women. Women are primarily responsible for the health and well being of the world's children and the poverty of the women generally results in the physical and social underdevelopment of their children. Experience shows that women are a good credit risk, and that women invest their income toward the well being of their families. At the same time, women themselves benefit from the higher social status they achieve within the home when they are able to provide income.

Microenterprise is a solution to the poorest people's inability to find satisfactory employment and obtain needed credit. Access to the tools and credit needed to succeed allows the poor to reap the benefits of their skills and hard work. Microenterprise gives borrowers the capacity to improve the quality of their lives and the futures of their children. Extra money earned is used to obtain better food, housing and education. As a result, the returns to the entire society are high.

A core goal of RESULTS is to reach 100 million of the world's poorest families, especially the women of those families, with credit for self-employment by 2005. To have maximum impact, microenterprise programs must reach the very poor.

Campaign Goals: Our 2004 campaign will build on the microenterprise legislation signed into law in 2003. Our goals will include:

  1. Reintroduction of microenterprise policy legislation to ensure that USAID effectively implements the development and use of poverty measurement tools as mandated in HR192, in order to ensure that the very poor are reached.
  2. Meetings between members of Congress and the World Bank President and the head of the UN Development Program (and other follow-up efforts) to push these institutions to expand their microenterprise work and ensure that at least half of their microenterprise resources are reaching the very poor.
  3. Building on language in the 2004 foreign aid funding bill to ensure that USAID microenteprise monies are directed to those institutions that are reaching large numbers of very poor people (vs. mainly for-profit contractors); and d) creating a new pot of money to support microcredit/AIDS efforts to expand programs in AIDS affected areas and provide activities such as HIV/AIDS education within microcredit programs.

Domestic Campaign for 2004

In 2004, RESULTS will continue working on our 2003 campaigns, until legislation is passed, which we expect to happen by April.

TANF (Temporary Assistance to Needy Families): In 2001 we began work on TANF reauthorization, which was scheduled for 2002 and was still not concluded in 2003. In some ways this is a victory in itself since the administration budget and House version would have been a step backward. As 2004 is an election year and members will be focused on reelection in the fall, we expect it to be concluded in the spring of 2004.

Head Start: Same as TANF, except that we expect this to be concluded as soon as February. There were very damaging proposals that we managed to subvert, that would have block granted Head Start to some or all states, and imposed "testing" without providing funding to do so. (Head Start is not about academics per se. Head Start is about socializing and learning how to learn.)

Individual Development Accounts (IDAs): Emphasis on major expansion to 300,000 IDA accounts. The House version does not include expansion of IDAs. The Senate's does. The conference committee has gotten held up. Senator Santorum (R-PA), a leader on this issue, believes the bill could be completed early in 2004.

Regardless of the outcome of the legislation, it will be important to monitor the RESULTS, in TANF, in Head Start, in IDAs, and also in in child nutrition programs. RESULTS will respond appropriately as information comes in about harms of new and existing legislation.

After these three bills are passed, we will probably expand the IDA campaign to include more asset-based strategies:

RESULTS may also work on health insurance coverage.

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