Ja­pan con­trib­utes $16m to ben­e­fit FATA re­turnees, Afghan refugees

The Pak Banker - - NATIONAL -

The Ja­panese govern­ment on Wed­nes­day an­nounced a con­tri­bu­tion of US$ 16 mil­lion in to­tal to the UN De­vel­op­ment Pro­gramme (UNDP), UN High Com­mis­sioner for Refugees (UN­HCR), UN Chil­dren's Fund (UNICEF) and UN World Food Pro­gramme (WFP) to sup­port Re­turnees in the Fed­er­ally Ad­min­is­tered Tribal Ar­eas and Afghan refugees in Pak­istan. The Charg‚ d'Af­faires ad in­terim of the Ja­panese Em­bassy in Pak­istan, Junya Mat­suura, and UN Res­i­dent Co­or­di­na­tor and Hu­man­i­tar­ian Co­or­di­na­tor, Neil Buhne, made the an­nounce­ment at the WFP of­fice here.

Sec­re­tary of SAFRON, Cap­tain Re­tired Muham­mad Tariq Hayat, UNDP Coun­try Di­rec­tor ( a. i.), Ms. Tracy Vien­ings, UN­HCR Rep­re­sen­ta­tive, In­drika Rat­watte, UNICEF Chief of Field Op­er­a­tions, Ra­hama Ri­hood Mo­hammed, and WFP Rep­re­sen­ta­tive, Ms. Lola Cas­tro, also at­tended. The US$ 16 mil­lion con­sists of $US3 mil­lion for UNDP, $US 4 mil­lion for UN­HCR, $US3 mil­lion for UNICEF and $US6 mil­lion for WFP.

UNDP will help re­in­force the lo­cal gov­er­nance ca­pac­ity to man­age the re­cov­ery process while pro­vid­ing di­rect as­sis­tance to the af­fected peo­ple in the re­turn ar­eas of FATA by cre­at­ing liveli­hood op­por­tu­ni­ties through vo­ca­tional and busi­ness man­age­ment train­ings in or­der to pro­vide the nec­es­sary skills to ac­cess em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties af­ter re­turn.

Fur­ther­more, small scale cash for work ac­tiv­i­ties to help re­ha­bil­i­tate com­mu­nity in­fra­struc­ture and im­prove ac­cess to ba­sic ser­vices will be un­der­taken along with tech­ni­cal sup­port to re­turn­ing com­mu­ni­ties to en­sure safe re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion prac­tices. The UN­HCR will pro­vide pro­tec­tion as­sis­tance and sup­port the re­turnees to FATA as well as education, liveli­hoods and vo­ca­tional train­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for Afghan refugee youth in the coun­try along with pro­tec­tion and le­gal as­sis­tance in­ter­ven­tions and health pro­grammes.

Pak­istan has been the home to mil­lions of Afghans for over 35 years. More than 3.9 mil­lion Afghan refugees have re­turned since 2002, 58,000 in 2015 alone. Some 1.5 mil­lion reg­is­tered Afghan refugees still live in Pak­istan.

The over­ar­ch­ing ob­jec­tive of the UNICEF in­ter­ven­tions is to pro­vide an im­proved and eq­ui­table de­liv­ery of mul­ti­sec­toral in­ter­ven­tions to sup­port early re­cov­ery needs of re­turn­ing pop­u­la­tion with spe­cial fo­cus on women and chil­dren, in ar­eas of their ori­gin in FATA. The as­sis­tance will en­sure that girls, boys and women have re­li­able ac­cess to safe drink­ing wa­ter and san­i­ta­tion, knowl­edge of ap­pro­pri­ate hygiene be­hav­ior is im­proved, en­rol­ment and re­ten­tion of out of school chil­dren (girls and boys) in safer schools en­vi­ron­ments is en­hanced and the nu­tri­tional sta­tus of girls, boys and women (preg­nant and nurs­ing) is pro­tected from the ef­fects of hu­man­i­tar­ian crises.

WFP will as­sist FATA re­turnees dur­ing the ini­tial stage of re­set­tle­ment to en­able a rapid start of liveli­hoods and nutri­tion ac­tiv­i­ties for sus­tain­able food se­cu­rity.

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