World Bank, ARTF Boost Afghanistan Livelihoods Project Funds – Mirage News

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WASHINGTON, April 30, 2024-The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors today approved a $84 million grant from the International Development Association (IDA) for the Afghanistan Community Resilience and Livelihoods Project, which complements $70 million in additional financing from the Afghanistan Resilience Trust Fund (ARTF).

The project started in 2022 with a grant of $265 million from the ARTF to provide livelihoods support and services in rural and urban areas, support social grants for women and the most vulnerable, and strengthen community institutions for inclusive service delivery.

With this additional financing, the project will scale up activities in more rural and urban areas, provide more livelihood opportunities for women, expand activities focused on building climate resilience, and provide employment and services to returning Afghan migrants.

“In the past 18 months, the project has laid the foundation for an effective service delivery platform and operational model at scale for delivering jobs, providing essential services and assets, and, importantly, reaching women,” said Melinda Good, World Bank Country Director for Afghanistan. “With the additional financing, the project will continue its essential works in all six regions of the country, 26 of the 34 provinces, 67 rural districts, 6,200 rural communities, and eight major cities.”

To date, the project has provided short-term employment to over 776,000 households, benefiting around 5.4 million Afghans, and about 92,200 vulnerable households received cash transfers or in-kind social grants, with a significant portion being female-headed households or those with disabled members. Approximately 7.4 million Afghans gained access to services like roads, sanitation, and water supply, and more than 2.1 million community members received training in health and nutrition, the effects of climate change and disaster risk management.

In addition, the project has helped create a market for local civil works and preserve local contractors’ capacities built over the last two decades. An estimated 2,200 highly skilled market-driven jobs have been created.

The project is implemented by UNOPS, which facilitates international and local NGO partners and local private sector contractors to implement activities in rural and urban areas.

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