This week's blog comes from CFID Chair Amanda Solloway MP, with a strong message: this Government has a track record of delivering when it comes to International Development - we need to make sure we're shouting it from the rooftops. Here at CFID, we're proud to have Amanda as our champion to help us highlight this Government's record in International Development.
In 2015, the International Development agenda was pushed firmly to the front of the minds of the public. We saw unprecedented human and economic disasters in the Middle East and across Europe coupled with natural disasters across the world. The international community needed Britain to step up to the plate when it mattered most; and Britain responded.
These recent crises show why aid is so important for us as well as for the countries we assist. From our response to Ebola to our use of our aid budget to lead the international response to the refugee crisis on Europe's borders, it’s clear that strategic aid spending is absolutely in the UK’s national interest.
CFID has done an awful lot to further the cause within the Party, across Parliament, and with the general public. Our engagement with Parliamentarians is vital to our success, and I’m really proud of the progress we’ve made on this front. We’re recruiting more and more supporters from across the Party, and I’m so pleased to see so many Conservative supporters of International Development.
I’m proud of our achievements so far. Over 28.5 million children under-5, breastfeeding and pregnant women have received nutrition interventions, and 5.1 million births have been delivered with the help of nurses, midwives or doctors through DFID support. This creates a stronger society and workforce in developing countries, more able to lift themselves out of poverty and contribute to their nations’ prosperity. Our objective for developing countries should be to end aid dependency through jobs, building up strong and investable business environments.
Britain is leading the international response to the humanitarian crisis in Syria and, having already pledged £1.12 billion, we’re the second biggest bilateral donor of humanitarian aid. £105 million of that funding will help Syrians who are still in Syria.
We’re committed to fulfilling our responsibilities across the world. That’s why we sent the Royal Navy to the Mediterranean to save thousands of lives; it’s why we’ve met our commitment to spend 0.7 per cent of our economy on aid; it’s why Britain is the second biggest bilateral donor in the world to Syrian refugee camps; and it’s why since the crisis began we have granted asylum to nearly 5,000 Syrians and their families.
We’ve never had a better chance to shape the agenda – Conservatives in Government have got a track record of delivering when it comes to International Development. We’ve got a great story to tell, and we need to make sure that we’re shouting about it from the rooftops.