Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

WFP, EU Forge New Partnership to Empower Refugees in Egypt

Tue 23 Apr 2024 | 12:41 PM
Ahmed Emam

On Monday, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) in Egypt and the European Commission’s Service for Foreign Policy Instruments (FPI) launched a new partnership to empower both refugees living in Egypt and host communities and improve their self-reliance and social cohesion.

According to a statement released by by WFP, the European Union’s (EU) €2 million contribution will target 6,000 people from nine different countries living in Egypt – including Sudanese refugees who escaped conflict – through targeted capacity-building initiatives in Cairo, Alexandria, Aswan, Damietta, and other regions across the country.

Throughout the 18-month program, participants will receive training across a diverse array of fields, including skilled trades like carpentry, manufacturing, and craftsmanship. By engaging the private sector, the programme also facilitates on-the-job trainings to ensure a seamless transition from learning to employment opportunities.

WFP Egypt's Interim Country Director, Gianpietro Bordignon, H.E Ambassador Christian Berger, Head of the EU Delegation to Egypt, and a delegation from the EU visited Aswan to mark the programme's launch that kicked off with a series of vocational trainings with refugees, including digital marketing, graphic design, and culinary sessions.

Minister of International Cooperation Rania A. Al-Mashat and Minister of Social Solidarity Dr Nevine Al-Kabbaj also attended the inauguration in Aswan.

“The World Food Programme (WFP) and the European Union (EU) are key development partners to Egypt, working collaboratively within our diverse cooperation portfolio that includes food security and investing in human capital. This is a core part of putting forth a people-centric, inclusive development,” said Rania A. Al-Mashat, Minister of International Cooperation.

“While Egypt hosts over 9 million migrants and refugees from diverse nationalities, the Ministry of Social Solidarity (MOSS) supports the provision of a multifaceted intervention social service package that encompasses humanitarian assistance, social care, social protection, and economic empowerment measures targeting refugees and host communities, with a special emphasis on the most vulnerable groups including women, children, persons with disabilities, persons without care, and elderly. MOSS acknowledges the importance of support provided through partners from line ministries, civil society, and international partner organizations, and we strongly commend the strong and effective partnership with the European Union Delegation in Egypt that enables us to introduce comprehensive and sustainable solutions to rising crises and emergencies”, said Minister of Social Solidarity Nevine Al-Kabbaj.

"Migration, resilience, livelihood, and social cohesion are priorities for the EU as they aim at peaceful coexistence. We are convinced that inclusion and self-reliance represent concrete solutions to address the needs of refugees and local communities. We believe in initiatives involving youth and women as gateways for reconciliation, social cohesion, and education for peace across society," said H.E. Ambassador Christian Berger.

"The EU is a long-standing partner of WFP in Egypt, and we are thrilled to expand the scope of our partnership to build the resilience of refugees and their host communities in Egypt and help increase their employment opportunities,” said Gianpietro Bordignon, WFP Interim Country Director in Egypt.” Thanks to the EU’s contribution, WFP in Egypt can provide them with the essential tools that would allow them to become self-reliant and secure their basic needs independently. Our gratitude extends to our Egyptian partners, whose collaboration makes this vital work possible. Together, we are dedicated to improving the lives of those facing the greatest challenges."