World Bank approves US $114m for TDPs in Pakistan


ISLAMABAD: The World Bank approved US$114 million on Thursday to significantly expand support for families affected by militancy-related violence, improve child healthcare and establish systems for emergency response and safety net delivery in the affected areas of Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) in Pakistan.

The World Bank approved a US$75 million credit for the original FATA Temporarily Displaced Persons (TDPs) Emergency Recovery Project of August 2015. Beneficiaries of the project are the families from five FATA agencies namely North Waziristan, South Waziristan, Orakzai, Kurram and Khyber, said a press release from the World Bank.

The additional financing will help expand the support to 326,000 eligible temporarily displaced families, up from 120,000 under the original project. It will also raise the number of participating families with children under two years of age to 300,000, up from 64,000 families benefiting from the Child Wellness Grant under the original project.

The new financing will also expand the child health services to all 15 one stop shops in these FATA agencies. The one-stop shops reduce travel time and costs for parents by providing all related services at one point.

“Displaced people in fragile or conflict situations need livelihood support when they leave their homes and upon their return as well,” said World Bank Country Director for Pakistan, Illango Patchamuthu. “The additional financing will ensure that the returning families have the means to start their lives anew.”

The Early Recovery Package, at the centre of the project, consists of two cash grants: a one-time Early Recovery Grant of Rs35, 000 per family, and a Livelihood Support Grant of Rs16, 000 per family in four monthly instalments of Rs4,000.

The Child Wellness Grant offered to both TDP and non-TDP families is provided in three equal instalments of Rs2,500 each, conditional on families attending periodic health awareness sessions on nutrition, hygiene and immunisation.

“Despite many constraints including the security challenges in FATA, successful implementation of the project has presented an opportunity to significantly increase the number of people benefiting from the project,” said World Bank task team leader of the project, Amjad Zafar Khan.

“The project’s emphasis on service delivery and inclusion will go a long way in restoring FATA citizens’ confidence in government systems,” he added.

The credit is financed by the International Development Association, the World Bank Group’s fund for the poor with a maturity of 25 years, including a grace period of 5 years.