Poverty alleviation programme gets underway

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By 2017-11-15

The European Union (EU) launched a Rs 5.4 billion programme to support development and reduce poverty in the Uva and Central Provinces by improving the income of poor people living in rural areas and helping to ensure that they have enough food to eat, even in times of hardship.

Speaking at the launch alongside the Governors, Chief Ministers and Chief Secretaries of the two Provinces, Ambassador of the Delegation of the EU to Sri Lanka and the Maldives, Tung-Lai Margue said that the provision of better water and sanitation to increasing technical knowledge and empowering women was the plan.

This grant, which is a part of the EU's wider programme of support to rural development in Sri Lanka will benefit rural communities in the Moneragala, Badulla, Nuwara Eliya and Matale Districts. The programme is expected to be operational for five years (2017-2022). The programme will be implemented by five partner organizations.

Specifically; CARE, which will assist in establishing and strengthening small and medium enterprises (SMEs) that are led by women and youth from rural and estate communities.

In addition, to increase their participation in decision-making around employment creation, business development and economic growth;

Agency for Technical Cooperation and Development (ACTED), which aims to create jobs and increase income levels by building capacity and bringing value addition to local farming SMEs targeting women-led businesses in dairy, vegetables, floriculture, fruits and spice value chains and additionally promoting a business enabling environment for SMEs by strengthening local business support services and engaging Local Government actors in integrated, climate-resilient and inclusive coordination mechanisms and economic development planning;

Oxfam, which seeks to improve income, provide work opportunities and integrate women in economic activities such as increasing veterinary services and dairy markets, improving potato seeds, cinnamon and cocoa production and also training civil society organisations and Local Government authorities to better engage in policy discussions on how to support entrepreneurs; and
Adventist Development and Relief Agency and Stichting Solidaridad, both of which will work with the rural and estate communities to increase access to water and sanitation facilities, improve personal hygiene and sanitation practices, and strengthen public authorities.



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