AIDS Donations Declining

According to a report from Funders Concerned About AIDS, philanthropic support for HIV/AIDS initiatives in low- and middle-income countries totaled $592 million in 2013, down 8 percent from 2012 and the lowest level of funding since 2007.  The report claims that only 3 percent of total international funding for David Worley Fannie Mae AIDSHIV/AIDS in these countries came from philanthropic sources, led by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Wellcome Trust, Gilead Sciences Inc and the MAC AIDS Fund.  The study also found that funding from US-based philanthropies totaled $431 million in 2013, down 4 percent on a year-over basis, and 88 percent of said funding was directed outside the US.  The top ten funders accounted for 83 percent of all US grantmaking for HIV/AIDS in 2013, with the Gates Foundation alone making up nearly half of the total.  Support from EU-based philanthropies totaled $133 million, down 16 percent from the previous year.  Support from funders based outside of the US and Western and Central Europe totaled $28 million, more or less flat from the previous year.

The report cites various reasons for this overall decline in funding, including the closing of two large funders: the Irene Diamond Fund and the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund.  In addition, at least five other funders ended up closing or reducing their HIV portfolios, and several major pharmaceutical companies have shifted funding to other areas of research including hepatitis C, chronic diseases and maternal and child health.  The report also showed that the top five target populations of HIV/AIDS funding in 2013 were women, people living with HIV/AIDS, “multiple populations”, orphaned and vulnerable children and youth.  Research projects topped the list in terms of funding purpose, followed by prevention, treatment, advocacy and social services.  FCAA executive director has spoken about the problem that this poses: new scientific development and political commitments could, if fully funded and implemented, move us closer to an end of AIDS.  However, he claims that such progress is being threatened by continued decreases in funding from private philanthropic donors who provide critical support for protecting the basic rights of populations who are currently most at risk for HIV/AIDS.