NORTH COTABATO – Families displaced by conflict in Central Mindanao have made significant gains in rebuilding their livelihoods through a two-year peace-building project implemented by the European Union (EU) and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP).
The €5.9 million (PHP 312 million) EU grant under the Aid to Uprooted People Programme supported more than 62,000 families from Lanao del Norte, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, North Cotabato, and Sultan Kudarat in asset creation and livelihood training.
The projects helped uprooted families normalise their lives by providing livelihood opportunities that aim to not only increase household incomes but also contribute to overall food security. Projects include the construction of inland fishponds, tree-planting and building dikes for flood control.
EU Ambassador Guy Ledoux commended the communities and local government partners for their achievements. “The European Union has provided opportunities for livelihood and we are pleased that the project has shown concrete manifestations of peace-building and community development at work as people have managed to maximise their resources and skills,” he said.
“To witness families living in peace and working together to improve their lives is a tribute both to the European Union and to the people here in Central Mindanao,” said WFP Representative Praveen Agrawal. “It is important that we continue to strengthen and consolidate the work done here. We see the EU as a strategic partner in these efforts as we move forward.”
In addition to the €5.9 million grant to the Aid to Uprooted People Programme, the EU has also previously supported people displaced from their homes by conflict in Mindanao with a €6.4 million (PHP 364 million) grant for the Food Facility programme to similarly support food-for-assets activities.
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The European Union numbers 28 different member states determined to shape their future closely together. Over a period of enlargement of more than 50 years, they have together built a zone of peace, stability, progress and solidarity. The EU is a model for overcoming conflict and promoting reconciliation through close co-operation to achieve common goals, while respecting national sovereignty and territorial integrity.
With total assistance since 2007 of more than PHP 680 million, the EU’s programmes have contributed to maintaining peace on the ground and to enhancing the humanitarian and socio-economic situation of conflict-affected populations, thereby helping establish an environment conducive to the successful negotiation of a Peace Agreement.
WFP is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide, delivering food in emergencies and working with communities to build resilience. In 2013, WFP assisted more than 80 million people in 75 countries.
For more information, please contact:
EU Delegation to the Philippines (Email: Thelma.GECOLEA@eeas.europa.eu):
Thelma Gecolea, Public Affairs Officer, Tel. +63 (02) 859-5100 local 5124, Mobile +63 920-966-1371
World Food Programme – Philippines (Email: FaizzaFarinna.Tanggol@wfp.org):
Faizza Tanggol, Public Information Assistant, Tel. +63 (02) 750-2561 local 2420, Mobile +63 917-880-9368