CAR: AfDB Approves US$ 12 Million for Community Development Project

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Tunis, Tunisia, 22 July 2009 – In line with efforts to help states tackle poverty and build capacity, the African development Bank (AfDB) Group has approved a grant of US$12.41 million (8 million Units of Account) from the Fragile States Facility (FSF) to finance a Project for Community Development and Support Tto Vulnerable Groups (PDCAGV) in Central African Republic.

Designed to improve the supply of basic social services at community levels in order to raise the living conditions of the people, especially the vulnerable groups, the project will be implemented over a five-year period from 2010 to 2014. It comprises three components: capacity building; basic infrastructure development; and management, monitoring and evaluation.

The project will cover 100 local councils in 10 of the country’s 16 divisions located in the southern parts of the country. These are Lobaye and Ombella Mpoko (in Region 1), Nana Mambere, Mambere Kadei and Sangha Mbaere (in Region 2), Ouham (in Region 3), Kemo and Ouaka (in Region 4), and Basse Koto and Mbomou (in Region 6). The divisions were selected either because they have been affected by conflicts or are among the poorest in the country and have a significant shortfall in community infrastructure; or because they are located in areas of the country which are now secure and suitable for the implementation of the activities selected.

Conceived as an investment project, the PDCAGV forms part of the activities envisaged in the government’s 2008-2010 Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP) and the Bank and World Bank’s 2009-2012 Joint Country Partnership Strategy Paper (JCPSP) which focus on building basic infrastructure in the social sector. It will provide the project with the necessary financial and management autonomy for its smooth implementation.

The PDCAGV is also a social project designed to achieve measurable benefits by helping to replenish the country’s human capital and developing basic infrastructure. Health centers will help to improve the country’s social indicators and its economic competitiveness by producing skilled labour.

In this regard, the main  expected outputs include enhanced production methods for 1500 smallholders, improved access of beneficiaries to drinking water as well as basic health and education services following the operationalization of 330 grassroots community facilities, an increase in production for smallholder groups which will receive 240 agricultural, fishing and livestock kits, the alleviation of domestic chores for groups of women who will receive the 150 multi-purpose platforms, closer supervision of the visually and hearing impaired as a result of the training of 8 trainers specialized in their monitoring, as well as knowledge improvement for about 100,000 beneficiaries in areas such as the environment, family planning, human rights or conflict prevention and management through Information, Education and Communication (IEC) activities.

About 4,000 children would be enrolled each year in the 55 schools rehabilitated or built under the project, while some 7000 people would be treated in the health centers. In addition, the project will enhance agricultural production through smallholder training sessions and the supply of 240 kits. The infrastructure works will create at least 1000 jobs in the project area.

* 1 UA Units of Account) = 1.58223 US$ on 20/07/2009

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