Through the CIDA-funded HIV/AIDS Small Grants Fund, CSIH sought to increase collaboration between Canada and developing countries or countries-in-transition, encourage the development of innovative, cost-effective, knowledge-based approaches to address the HIV/AIDS pandemic, and increase the quantity and quality of HIV/AIDS programming. More than fifty small projects were funded in more than thirty countries. CSIH managed all aspects of the Fund, from coordinating the small grants application, review, and selection processes to overseeing and monitoring the implementation of the small grants, to administering fund’s finances, to conducting the end of project evaluations. CSIH also provided cross-cutting capacity-building to the small grants recipients and fosters networking among them. Each of the small grants adapted an innovative approach to HIV/AIDS, such as cross-sectoral approaches that linked HIV/ AIDS to non-health sectors such as education or labour, or worked with non-traditional populations such as women, children, or orphans.
CSIH was responsible for assessing the outcomes of the grant activities, which involves developing an evaluation framework, analyzing information, and feeding information back to the small grant recipients. A participatory approach was used throughout the entire process, with emphasis on building the capacity of the recipients to effectively design, implement and monitor projects.