UNDP Administrator Helen Clark: Statement on MDG Achievement Fund to Resident Co-ordinator

Jun 20, 2011

(Video recording transcript from Wed., 15 June)

Good morning to you in Morocco. I am pleased to be able to share a few thoughts with you from New York before you begin your meeting.  

Your discussions will help shape how we take forward the work of the MDG Achievement Fund, and how we consolidate the lessons and contributions which will be its legacy.
This Fund was designed to help countries and the UN achieve in three areas: MDG progress, enhanced national ownership, and UN Reform.

The MDG Achievement Fund represents the broadest example to date of UN agencies carrying out joint and multi-sectoral development initiatives. It is a trail blazer for how future joint programming might work in the UN development system.

The Fund has aimed for meaningful and sustainable development results, through programmes which have an impact on national policies and thereby translate into lasting and far-reaching change. As such, it is offering important support for countries striving to accelerate their MDG progress through 2015.

As official development assistance stagnate and levels even dwindle, and as the demand for results measurement and reporting grows, it becomes even more critical for the UN development system to be rigorous its work.

The MDG Fund must continue to be a pacesetter in this area. It’s good to see that time has been set aside in this workshop for reviewing challenges and best practices in monitoring and evaluation. By establishing a successful model for future joint monitoring and evaluation, the MDG Achievement Fund helps our whole system.

The Fund’s work has shown that communication and advocacy is an integral part of programme implementation. By committing resources to communication and advocacy activities, a growing number of MDG Achievement Fund programmes have been able to engage citizens in efforts which advance both programme and MDG objectives.

As the work of the MDG Fund continues, we count on the strategic leadership of the Resident Co-ordinators who have been such key players in moving it forward.  Your oversight is critical in ensuring that National Steering Committees play their central role, and that joint programmes are owned by national partners. This is not just about compliance; it is about making the most of the MDG Fund, and learning from the model for joint programming which it represents. Some UNCTs have already reported that by broadly applying a MDG Fund approach to programming, they have been able to improve UN co-ordination, including in the UNDAF process.

Going forward, the experience and understanding which you and your teams have as practitioners and managers of MDG Fund programmes needs to be shared across the UNDG community as well as the broader international development agenda. Experiences with the Fund can contribute to preparations for both the High Level Forum on aid effectiveness in Busan and the review of Delivering as One in Uruguay later this year.  

I hope that you will use this workshop to ensure that these connections are made, and that we all make the most of the opportunities presented by the MDG Fund.

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