The Government of France has contributed US$568,690 (€500,000) to UNDP’s Iraq Crisis Response and Resilience Programme (ICRRP) to promote recovery and resilience-building in areas liberated from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
The funding will help improve access to income-generating opportunities for 200 vulnerable returnees in Sinjar and Hamdaniya – where returnee numbers are high – through small business grants and saving schemes, as well as professional training programmes.
In an effort to ensure sustainability, the contribution also bolsters ICRRP’s work with national chambers of commerce to build their capacities to respond to future crises.
During a signature ceremony to launch the new project, the French Ambassador to Iraq, Mr. Bruno Aubert welcomed Ambassador Eric Chevallier, Director of CDCS (Centre de crise et de soutien) in the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who highlighted that:
“this project is well aligned with both French and Iraqi priorities for stabilization. Targeting the improvement of the conditions for the safe return of IDPs in areas strongly affected by ISIL occupation, the provision of immediate livelihood and employment opportunities – in particular for youth and women – is a key step toward more resiliency and sustainability for these communities.”
Deputy Special Representative of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), Ms. Marta Ruedas, added,
“UNDP will support the financial empowerment of individuals to help alleviate the pressure on public finance, whilst at the same time creating a diverse business environment that will enable long-term economic growth.”
Many areas of Ninewa have experienced extensive damage to public and private infrastructure and with the effects of long-term displacement are now experiencing a lack of diverse livelihood opportunities, often exacerbated by prevailing security threats.
ICRRP is part of the Recovery and Resilience Programme (RRP) that was launched at the Kuwait International Conference for Reconstruction of Iraq earlier this year. In this context, the Government of France support will contribute to the RRP results area of expanding livelihoods opportunities in Iraq.
UNDP’s Iraq Crisis Response and Resilience Programme (ICRRP) promotes the recovery and resilience of communities vulnerable to multi-dimensional shocks associated with large-scale returns and protracted displacement of Iraqis and Syrian refugees.
This is achieved through medium-term programming, integrating crisis management capacity building, rehabilitating basic service infrastructure, livelihood recovery and social cohesion.