New York, 21 September 2023 (TDI): The European Union (EU) committed €140 million in humanitarian aid to Afghan people, specifically focusing on women and girls’ well-being in Afghanistan.

In a significant move, the EU has approved the release of €140 million to provide humanitarian aid for Afghan citizens. This allocation spans education, health, agriculture, and empowerment initiatives for women.

This decision follows meticulous scrutiny over six months, focusing on the guiding principle of “for women by women,” ensuring Afghan women’s participation in all stages of aid distribution.

Also read: UNGA coalition tackles gender-based discrimination in Afghanistan.

Reputable organizations, including UN agencies, the World Bank, and International Non-Governmental Organizations, will channel these funds on the ground.

The primary objective of this financial support is to address the pressing basic needs of the Afghan population, who are grappling with numerous challenges in their homeland.

The initiative aligns with the Foreign Affairs Council’s consensus in February 2023 to maintain a principled approach to EU assistance. This approach assists solely in sectors and regions where women can participate in aid delivery.

Funding mobilization for new projects

This funding mobilization aims to launch new projects that foster an enabling learning environment for both boys and girls. Moreover, it seeks to enhance school accessibility by providing food assistance.

In terms of healthcare, the funds will be instrumental in bolstering fundamental health services and addressing infectious diseases. It will help ensure safe drinking water, improve child nutrition, and enhance household food security and resilience.

Significant efforts will also be invested in promoting sustainable agricultural value chains. In addition, it will build climate resilience and aid the return and reintegration of Afghan refugees returning from neighboring countries.

Additionally, this support endeavors to empower women economically through skill development, facilitating access to finance, expanding market opportunities, fostering economic resilience, and bolstering women-led small enterprises.

The EU is co-chairing the Afghanistan Coordination Group with the UN as well as the World Bank.

This collaboration will ensure continued and close monitoring of the application of the “for women by women” principle, guaranteeing that the intended beneficiaries receive the assistance they need.

Previous support package

The EU declared this €140 million disbursement for basic needs and livelihood improvement. Which is part of the larger €1 billion Support Package for the Afghan populace initially announced in August 2021.

The EU has successfully mobilized €980 million of this €1 billion commitment. From this, €500 million addresses basic needs and livelihoods, while €480 million is for humanitarian assistance.

Commissioner for International Partnerships, Jutta Urpilainen, remarked on this development, “We know how difficult it has been to navigate the increasingly severe situation in Afghanistan.

Yet, over the last six months, the international community has found a way to deliver desperately needed support to women, girls, and other vulnerable groups.

This support offers livelihood solutions for millions while not recognizing the Taliban de facto authorities.”