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Minister says Irish Aid programme is delivering for the world’s poorest people

Irish Aid, Funding, Minister Joe Costello, Press Releases, Ireland, 2013

Minister for Trade and Development, Joe Costello TD today highlighted the results being achieved by Ireland’s overseas development programme at the launch of the Irish Aid Annual Report 2012.

Launching the report in Dublin, Minister Costello said: “The Irish Aid programme – the Irish people’s aid programme – ensures that vulnerable communities can build a better future for their children over the long-term. Our aid programme can and does save lives.”

The theme of this year’s report is Reducing Hunger, Strengthening Resilience. It highlights the difference which Irish Aid’s support is making in the lives of families affected by extreme hunger and poverty.

Minister Costello said: “Irish Aid works to strengthen the ability of vulnerable communities to cope with shocks such as natural disasters or illness. And today’s report shows these programmes are working: In Ethiopia in 2012, almost 7 million people were protected from hunger because of programmes supported by Irish Aid. In the Ntcheu District in Malawi, the number of children under five dying from malaria has reduced by 95% since 2010.

“Our support is making a practical difference in people’s lives, enabling them access basic services like healthcare and education, and provide food and clothing for their families.”

Minister Costello also spoke of the challenges that remain and reiterated the Government’s commitment to those living in extreme hunger and poverty.

“Our aid programme is an expression of our sense of solidarity and community with the world’s poorest people.  We can be proud that it is so supported by the Irish people and that it is still recognised as one of the most effective in the world.

Looking ahead to his upcoming visit to the United Nations General Assembly later this month, when global leaders will discuss how to accelerate the progress achieved under the Millennium Development Goals, Minister Costello added:

“I firmly believe that if we can mobilise the political commitment and the will, in cooperation with our partners in the developing world, we now have a real opportunity to end extreme poverty and hunger in just one more generation.”