Global Action for Children
Formed in 2004, Global Action for Children (GAC) was a coalition dedicated to improving the lives of orphans and highly vulnerable children in the developing world.
GAC advocated for improved policies and expanded investments in proven interventions, increased effectiveness of programs, and efficient spending of taxpayer dollars to better serve children. GAC lead advocacy efforts to ensure access to low-cost, life-saving medicine and interventions that directly impacted and ensured the survival and healthy development of orphans and highly vulnerable children.
GAC's unique strength was derived from the effectiveness and diversity of the charitable, faith-based, nongovernmental, and student organizations that comprise its Leadership Council, and the ability to mobilize a broad range of constituencies.
GAC was a nonpartisan, independent voice for children that did not accept any government funding. That independence allowed GAC to adhere to its mission, avoid advocating out of self-interest, and take bold action on issues affecting children without fear of financial repercussions. Many in the child health community looked to GAC to be a strong, independent voice.
GAC areas of focus: basic education, keeping children with family and community (community care), child protection, early childhood development, child survival and immunizations, children in conflict, foreign aid reform, HIV/AIDS, TB and malaria; and prevention of child marriage and child sexual abuse.
Advocate Jennifer Delaney led efforts as a consultant from September 2005 – January 2006; US Director, January–October 2006; and founding Executive Director October 2006 – October 2009. Kathleen Guy served as executive director from October 2009 to 2010.
While Global Action for Children ceased operations in December 2010, GAC's impact and work on behalf of OVC continues to impact the lives of millions of children around the globe. GAC effort to serve a 10% earmark in the HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Act of 2003 was reauthorized, and PL-109-95 the Assistance for Orphans and Vulnerablele Children Act of 2005 now has a staffed secretariat, and the comprehensive strategy to address the needs of OVC is constantly evolving and innovating to address the complex issues they face.
Global Action for Children worked to improve policies and increase funding for orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) in developing countries.
- Policy outreach - GAC collected and analyzed information about the issues that affected orphans and vulnerable children from partners in the field. The findings were taken to policymakers to persuade them to allocate funds for programs that protect the world’s children.
- Media outreach - GAC educated media on the OVC crisis and placed op-eds national media outlets to influence members of Congress. GAC also engaged their constituents in key districts to work with local media to improve coverage of the OVC crisis.
- Coalition building - GAC frequently convened diverse groups of NGOs, technical advisors, academics, government officials and service provider to improve programing for orphans and vulnerable children in developing countries.
- Grassroots and Grasstops mobilization - GAC engaged in a wide variety of political strategies: training constituents in important congressional districts, National Press out reach from a wide variety of stakeholders, leveraging the influence GAC honorary Chairperson Angelina Jolie, and other influential supporters for public and back channel advocacy.
- Led efforts to develop legislation and generate support to pass the Assistance for Orphans and Other Vulnerable Children in Developing Countries Act (P.L. 109-95) in 2005 - the first comprehensive legislative response to the global crisis for orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) in developing countries.
- Led Civil Society Efforts (NGO, technical experts and academics) to develop a set of recommendations to the USG on implementation of PL-109-95
- Co-led AIDS-Free Generation coalition (with UNICEF and World Vision UK) to boost the UNAIDS resource needs assessment from $1.2 billion to $4.5 million to account for 19 million orphans between 2008-2015.
- Led efforts to authorize $3 billion (10 percent of PEPFAR funding) for OVC programs from 2009-2013.
- Raised awareness and influenced member of Congress to increased support for OVC though Congressional briefings, policy papers, advocacy efforts including op-eds and letters to the editor placement advocating for increased funding for orphans and vulnerable children in major media outlets such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, Tulsa World, The Baltimore Sun and Vanity Fair.
- Future partners of GAC worked together to get an earmark of 10% of U.S. global AIDS funding for the care and support of orphans and vulnerable children within U.S. Leadership against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Act of 2003
- Founded as a coalition of nongovernmental, faith-based, and student organizations
- Assistance for Orphans and Other Vulnerable Children in Developing Countries Act (PL-109-95) introduced, the result of GAC and Congressional allies working together
- OVC legislation signed into law November 8, 2005 by President Bush
- GAC led more than 30 stakeholders including academics, technical experts and NGO partners in creating Civil Society Recommendations for the Implementation of PL-109-95
- Jolie-Pitt Foundation contributed $1 million, along with other commitments from FXB International, and other donors
- GAC, in partnership with UNICEF, held a summit in Brussels on establishing an AIDS Free Generation network
- Organization was officially launched as an independent entity in April
- GAC influenced the Bush Administration’s appeal to Congress to increase the funding of PEPFAR from $15 million to $30 million, with 10 percent allocated to orphan care.
- GAC and UNICEF’s Unite for Children. Unite Against AIDS. campaign published the AIDS Free Generation strategy report.
- Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation made its first grant to GAC, Jolie-Pitt Foundation, FXB International, and other donors committed follow on grants.
- GAC convened and led a series of meetings with Civil Society, including NGO's, technical experts and academics, with USG officials open dialogue, and provide input on improving policies and program for OVCs
- GAC led advocacy efforts for the reauthorization of the 10% earmark for OVC in the U.S. Leadership against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Act of 2003
- GAC held "Children's Champion's Awards at the Newseum Honoring Sens. Richard Lugar (R-IN), Chris Dodd (D-CT), Barbara Boxer (D-CA) with Dr. Jim Kim of FXB Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard University as the keynote speaker.
- GAC named one of the best run charities in the Washington DC are by The Catalogue of Philanthropy for Greater Washington DC
- GAC Founding Executive Director Announced her resignation and move to Massachusetts due to a parental illness
- Kathleen Guy became Executive Director of Global Action for Children
- Kathleen Guy left GAC
- GAC closed its doors 12/2010
- "[http://www.childreninadversity.org/about/why/public-law-109-95 President Signs Assistance for Orphans and Other Vulnerable Children in Developing Countries Act of 2005]". WhiteHouse.gov. Retrieved 2008-07-29. External link in
- "Angelina Takes Global Action for Children". Ecorazzi. Retrieved 2008-07-29.