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Concern Worldwide today warmly welcomed the recommendations of the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade and Defence in their review of the Government’s Irish Aid programme.
Speaking at the report launch, Concern CEO, Dominic MacSorley, said: “This review shows why the Irish public can continue to feel truly proud of our aid programme.
“It cites the values, principles, effectiveness and impact of Irish aid and recognises our long-standing solidarity with the poorest and most vulnerable – a focus that must be retained if we are to deliver on the spirit of the United Nation’s Global Goals and the commitment to ‘leave no one behind’.”
The Committee’s report proposes a range of areas where Ireland can and should also go further, spotlighting the need to protect the quality of our aid programme, but also encouraging a meaningful commitment to growth in a planned and measured way.
Concern welcomed the report's dual focus on fighting hunger and building peace.
Mr MacSorley explained: “In recent years there has been an escalation of both conflict and hunger and the shadow of famine hung over four countries last year.
“The scandal of hunger and the harrowing reality of conflict are stains on our humanity and demand of us to scale up our solidarity and our leadership.
“Ireland has the history, the credibility and the credentials to play a leadership role in addressing both challenges.
“Taking on a leadership role would be an appropriate and fitting centrepiece to our new development policy and indeed our campaign for a seat on the UN Security Council.
“Ireland showed incredible skill in brokering a global agreement on the Sustainable Development Goals. We secured a global commitment to the notion of ‘leaving no one behind’ and ‘getting to the furthest behind first’.
"These are the tenets which can guide our next development policy and today’s report provides further valuable guidance to inform its shape and substance.”
For more information, please contact Kevin Jenkinson on 086 358 2886 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.