The Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office today published the first UK Government White Paper on International Development since 2009. Amref UK chief executive, Camilla Knox-Peebles reacted to the key themes of 'International Development in a contested world: ending extreme poverty and tackling climate change':
“The path to achieving the Agenda 2030 is at risk in this era of intersecting crises. Working together on bold action can help to get us there. The White Paper’s foundation in partnership to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is therefore welcome, as is the focus on locally-led development to ending extreme poverty and tackling climate change.
"We know that this model works. We see how values-based partnership between funders and development organisations can help us build strong health systems to make affordable access to health a reality for all. The backbone of those systems are skilled, motivated health workers who can deliver the primary health services their communities need, for community-designed and led health development. Women and girls are rightly identified as key drivers of this change, but we will only achieve that change if our own systems and processes change too. We welcome the commitment to a new UK strategy on locally-led development, and we must see financing that follows this rhetoric; with funds going directly to organisations led from the Global South.
"Finally, we must see a return of the UK aid budget to 0.7% of national income and ensure that the priority for official development assistance (ODA) is tackling poverty and inequality outside of the UK. At the root of the intersecting crises of climate change, conflict, and emerging global health threats, is inequity. To tackle the global challenges we are facing, we need partnerships that are based on equity and 'ubuntu', our shared humanity.”
Image: Salo Ali collects water at a shallow well in Marsabit County, northern Kenya (c) Amref Health Africa/Tony Wild