EBRD, IRC team up to address environmental risks in Irbid
The International Rescue Committee (IRC) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Monday signed a memo to deliver enhanced technical assistance for the EBRD-financed West Irbid Wastewater Network project.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by the IRC President and CEO David Miliband and Managing Director for the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean region at the EBRD Heike Harmgart. Minister of Water and Irrigation Muhammad Najjar attended the signing ceremony.
The collaboration between EBRD, IRC and the public sector stems from the drive for development and humanitarian partners to work more together, which has developed in Jordan and is informing global practices.
The West Irbid Wastewater Network Project, in support of the water ministry and the Water Authority of Jordan (WAJ), aims to provide sewage infrastructure to over 120,000 people. The large beneficiary population are critical to the success of the project, and this initiative ensures effective engagement.
This will help in addressing the urgent socio-economic needs of the local population and the refugee community in the Project area.
EBRD has mobilised grant funding from its Shareholders’ Special Fund to engage the Royal Scientific Society, who are working directly with the ministry/WAJ team that are managed jointly by EBRD and IRC.
IRC is also contributing their extensive on-the-ground experience and local knowledge in Jordan, which is complemented by EBRD’s project management.
Harmgart said: “This collaboration is part of the Bank’s wider engagement with WAJ to develop and implement a comprehensive wastewater investment programme in the country.
“We aim to help resolving Jordan’s current issues in the wastewater sector; caused by the rapid population growth, and due to the Syrian refugee influx which placed an unprecedented strain on the infrastructure.”
She added: “The improvements are also likely to circumvent potential health issues and related economic losses in Irbid.”
Speaking during the signing ceremony, Miliband emphasised the importance of collaboration and combining resources for the benefit of the country during such a challenging time:
Miliband said: “COVID-19 is an unparalleled crisis, and it is refugees and vulnerable host communities who are being hit the hardest. We’re proud to build on our existing efforts supporting refugees and Jordanians through this partnership which will strengthen the frontline environmental and health response to the pandemic in Jordan.
“We would like to thank EBRD for helping the IRC boost our response in the Kingdom to help support those most vulnerable.”
The IRC is further actively working with the Ministry of Social Development (MoSD), Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation, and the Greater Amman Municipality (GAM) to support the implementation of the Jordan Response Plan for the Syria Crisis for refugees and vulnerable Jordanians alike to improve their health, safety, and economic wellbeing.
Source: Jordan News Agency