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2,3m women to benefit from UNDP fund

Nyasha Kunyiswa

THE UNITED Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is set to give 2.3 million vulnerable women a drought relief fund to promote climate-resilient agriculture as the country is likely to face serious shortage of food due to poor rains.

In an interview with the Daily News yesterday, Environment, Climate Change and Renewable Energy Programme Coordinator for UNDP, Jeremiah Mushosho said they wanted to revive 21 irrigation schemes across the country.

“In its March 2020 Board meeting, the Green Climate Fund (GCF) approved a new US$26.6 million grant for a project to build climate resilience for vulnerable smallholder farmers in southern Zimbabwe.

“Through revitalisation of 21 irrigation schemes, enhancing water and soil moisture management and water use efficiency, promoting climate-resilient agriculture, improving access to climate information and markets, and building partnerships with public and private sector actors, the project will benefit 2.3 million rural smallholder farmers, mostly women in the vulnerable provinces of Manicaland, Masvingo and Matabeleland South,” Mushosho said.

He said the UNDP was conducting national consultations (Stockholm+50) around the country on the negative impacts of climate change.

 “National consultations will take place in different countries all over the world, including Zimbabwe, since climate change has affected globally.

“Consultations are viewed as a springboard for deepening engagement on complementary issues Such as national biodiversity strategies and action plans (NBSAPs), green recovery, national development strategies, sectoral development priorities like urbanisation, food and nutrition security, youth empowerment, poverty eradication, gender equality, employment, and inclusive growth.

“One of the desired outcomes from Stockholm+50 consultations is to help Zimbabwe advance integrated solutions across national climate, biodiversity, green recovery, nationals development strategies, and social development goals (SDG) policy frameworks,” Mushosho.

He added that the UNDP was hoping that the consultations would give them a favourable result.

“We expect the consultation workshops will deliver forward looking action oriented recommendations and commitments to secure long lasting impact well beyond Stockholm+50 international meeting.

“We also expect the consultation workshops to present recommendations on how to accelerate achievement of the SDGs, including a green and inclusive recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The project will be implemented through partnership between the UNDP and Ministry of lands, Agriculture and Rural Settlement.

“The GCF grant is being matched with US$20 million in co-finance from the government of Zimbabwe and US$1.2 million from UNDP.

 “The transparency, openness, inclusivity, and stakeholder group ownership of the preparatory consultations in the lead to Stockholm+50 will largely define the success of the international meeting.

“In order to ensure that no one is left behind, the consultation process in Zimbabwe will take a whole society and whole of government approach.

“During the consultations we will hear from policy makers, youth, women, persons with disabilities, private sector, academia, indigenous peoples, civil society, the media and the general public in a bid to come up with recommendations that will contribute to the global meeting which will be held in June 2022 in Stockholm, Sweden,”  Mushosho added.

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