Today, IRMA,  in collaboration with amfAR and AVAC, is delighted to officially release Version 1.0 of The GLAM Toolkit: Advocacy to improve access to safe, condom-compatible lubricant in Africa.

The Toolkit provides background on the status of lubricant (lube) access in Africa and strategies for civil society and government partners to secure and distribute sustainable supplies of safe, condom-compatible lube. Global Lube Access Mobilisation (GLAM) is a campaign of IRMA’s Project ARM (Africa for Rectal Microbicides) initiative.

It is also available on the IRMA blog here (where you can also learn more about Project ARM.)

And can be downloaded here as well.

Condom- compatible lube is associated with a decreased risk of condoms breaking or slipping. Simply put, condoms work better with condom-compatible lube, especially during anal intercourse. That said, men, women and transgender individuals – whether they have anal interourse, vaginal intercourse, or both, need and want safe, condom-compatible lube.

However, throughout the world, and particularly in Africa, condom-compatible lubricant is inaccessible for most people. The GLAM Toolkit (Version 1.0) is designed to encourage advocates to engage Ministries of Health, UN agencies, funders, non-governmental organizations, and other partners to make the provision and distribution of safe, condom-compatible lubricant a priority by positioning lubricant as an absolute necessity, along with male and female condoms.

The Toolkit contains six sections including:

·         Background and introduction
·         Lubricant—Basic Facts on Access and Safety
·         Review of African National Strategic Plans on Inclusion of Lubricant
·         Lube Procurement National Case Studies
·         Findings from Survey on Lube Distribution and Access
·         Advocacy Steps for Improving Access to Lubricant

As the Toolkit is a “living” document, it will be updated regularly by IRMA and partners to keep it timely and relevant. Hence, this Version 1.0 will be replaced by updated versions as the work progresses with new information to report. Please share your successes.

And remember, when you hear anyone say the word “condoms” – we say AND LUBE!

PS – While The GLAM Toolkit is focused on Africa and is embedded in our Project ARM initiative, we recognize that lube access is a serious issue all over the world. The ideas in the Toolkit can and should be adapted for other contexts – and we hope you will do that in yours. We also hope to secure resources to expand our lubricant access work beyond Africa. Stay tuned. And Lube!


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