UNDP and KSrelief expand their partnership to implement development solutions to humanitarian crises
February 21, 2023
Riyadh – The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSrelief) have renewed their partnership with the announcement of a Joint Implementation Programme (JIP) agreement that will provide support to vulnerable people in areas affected by conflict, crises and natural disasters across the Arab region and beyond. The assistance will support early recovery and fast transition to a course of development that helps them preserve their dignity and sense of agency, including immediate measures to protect livelihoods.
Supervisor General of KS Relief, Dr. Abdullah A. Al Rabeeah and UNDP Administrator, Achim Steiner announced the new agreement in their meeting on the side lines of the Third Riyadh International Humanitarian Forum today. The JIP agreement provides a global framework that helps move broader commitments expressed in an earlier memorandum of cooperation that both entities had signed in September 2022 —on the side lines of the 77th United Nation General Assembly in New York— into the realm of concrete projects ready for implementation.
“As the tragic earthquakes that hit Türkiye and Syria show, crises do not respect borders nor boundaries, devastating lives and upending livelihoods in the blink of an eye,” said Steiner. “New partnerships are vital to not only respond to this era of polycrisis but to get ahead of the crisis curve by pro-actively investing in resilient development across the Arab region and beyond – a defining feature of KSrelief and UNDP’s cooperation.”
In the initial phase, the JIP agreement will support projects in Jordan, Lebanon, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen, alongside local cooperation on training and capacity strengthening activities. Subsequently phases of the joint collaboration will expand support activities to include countries across Africa and Asia.
Under the new JIP framework, UNDP and KSrelief today signed two project agreements to support communities in Yemen affected by the ongoing conflict.
The first project extends vocational and business skills training for young Yemeni women and men, expanding coverage to 22 districts in nine governorates over a second phase of implementation that will be completed during the period of March 2023 to February 2024, with a total value of USD 4 million. The first phase of the project, implemented in 2021-2022 in six districts in the governorates of Hadramout and Lahj, helped over 5,000 people to improve their income and secure self-reliance.
The second project focuses on strengthening local mechanisms for peacebuilding and the protection of social cohesion. It aims to build the capacities of local authorities to enable greater participation of community members, especially youth and women, in initiatives that build resilience to shocks and disasters and help foster sustainable peace, at the local level. The 18-month project will be implemented from April 2023 till October 2024 and is valued at USD 2 million.
Established in 2015, KSrelief has rapidly expanded its operations to provide humanitarian and development assistance to more than 69 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America, amounting to over 45 percent of Saudi Arabia’s total Overseas Development Assistance.
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