(Source: Iraqi Children Foundation- ICF)The post Want to be Good News to an Iraqi Child? first appeared on Iraq Business News.
AICS and UNOPS Partner to Rehabilitate the Basic Services for Returnees in Sinjar, Iraq
The Italian Cooperation and UNOPS launched a new project to support the Government of Iraq in rehabilitating basic services to returnees in Sinjar.
The project will support the Government of Iraq in rehabilitating the basic water services for returnees in Sinjar district in Iraq, through a partnership with the Government of Italy.
The project will contribute to achieving the Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) for Iraq: Post-conflict transition towards durable solutions by supporting access to basic services to increase the resilience of returnees in target locations.
Since 2018, the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS) office in Amman has also been responsible for implementing international cooperation initiatives in Iraq. "Our support has focused on the Kurdish Region of Iraq (KRI) and neighbouring areas such as the Ninewa plains, which experienced high rates of return after the massive displacement of the resident population," said the Head of AICS Amman office Mr. Michele Morana.
"This project comes in line with the Italian Cooperation's aid priorities targeting the health and protection sectors in the Country, as it addresses immediate recovery and aims to improve accessibility, inclusiveness and quality of basic services for minorities and local communities".
"The Government of Italy fully supports the urgent need to rebuild Sinjar, through the restoration of basic services as key to incentivizing the return of still displaced people. Every effort should also be taken to reintegrate returnees within their communities and provide them with tangible support to rebuild their lives" said the Ambassador of Italy to Iraq Bruno Antonio Pasquino.
"Thanks to the support from the Italian Cooperation, UNOPS is able to lend a hand to the people returning to Sinjar District in Iraq. Access to water supplies is one of the many challenges faced by returnees and their families. The rehabilitation of basic services in the district will contribute to improving Sinjar water infrastructure and eventually improving people's lives." said Mr. Muhammad Usman Akram, the Director of UNOPS Operational Hub in Amman.
Through this project, the targeted populations will benefit from improved and rehabilitated basic water facilities. UNOPS will focus on the improvement of water services in Sinjar district. The main focus would be to rehabilitate damaged water facilities, such as potable and/or storm water pumps, generators, parts of water treatment units.
The intervention will also include innovative technologies, such as renewable and hybrid systems, where applicable, in target locations. It is envisaged that this project will support the Government in its efforts towards the realization of Agenda 2030 and more specifically contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG); specifically, SDG 3: Good Health and Well-being and SDG 6: Clean Water and Sanitation.
Sinjar is one of the four districts in Ninewa that presents a higher severity of needs, whereby the well-being, living standards, and ultimately resilience and recovery capacity of the local communities, as well as their social cohesion and safety, are all severely impacted as a result of unmet needs.
(Source: UN)The post Italy, UNOPS to provide Services for Returnees in Sinjar first appeared on Iraq Business News.
On Wednesday, the Iraqi Minister of Planning H.E. Dr. Khalid Batal Najim Abdullah, and the Humanitarian Coordinator Ms. Irena Vojáčková-Sollorano, released the 2021 Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) to assist 1.5 million vulnerable people in Iraq.
H.E. Dr. Abdullah said:
"The HRP will complement the Government of Iraq's own initiatives to help the people of Iraq recover from the setbacks they have experienced in recent years.
"The Government of Iraq and the United Nations will continue to work in partnership to help all Iraqis achieve and maintain a dignified standard of living."
Ms. Vojáčková-Sollorano commented:
"The people of Iraq should be commended for their resilience in the face of relentless hardships. COVID-19 added extra challenges for all of us in 2020.
"We are happy through the 2021 HRP to renew our commitment to assisting the most vulnerable Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and returnees in Iraq."
Iraq continues to face a complex humanitarian situation, despite the ongoing joint efforts of humanitarian partners, the Government of Iraq, and local authorities and communities to improve circumstances.
The post-conflict humanitarian situation in Iraq remains fragile, with approximately 1.3 million IDPs, and deepening socio-economic vulnerabilities brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 2021 Humanitarian Needs Overview found that 4.1 million Iraqis are in need of humanitarian assistance.
The 2021 HRP focuses on 1.5 million of the most vulnerable IDPs living in camps and in out-of-camp locations, as well as returnees, who continue to face significant humanitarian and protection needs.
This unified appeal represents the activities of 166 operational partners - national NGOs, international NGOs and UN agencies - involved in the humanitarian response in Iraq, in coordination with the efforts of the Government of Iraq. It seeks $607.2 million to carry out humanitarian programming across nine sectors.
In 2020, the humanitarian community was able to assist approximately 1.4 million people thanks to the efforts of partners and the generosity of donors.
(Source: UN)The post $600m needed for 2021 Iraq Humanitarian Response Plan first appeared on Iraq Business News.
By John Lee.
Iraq and Iran are to launch a fund to finance joint ventures between the two countries.
In his closing remarks to the Iran-Iraq Economic Conference on Wednesday, Iran's Minister of Energy Reza Ardakanian said
"The proposal to establish a joint venture fund to support the private sector of the two countries was approved."
The conference also discussed plans to establish a branch of Tehran University of Medical Sciences in Iraq.
(Source: Iranian Ministry of Energy)The post Iraq, Iran to launch Joint Investment Fund first appeared on Iraq Business News.
Weir Oil and Gas Approved to Deliver OPITO - Accredited Qualifications in Iraq
Weir Oil & Gas has successfully achieved accreditation from OPITO, the global skills organization for the energy industry, to provide occupational training qualifications from the Weir Oil & Gas Centre of Manufacturing and Engineering Excellence in Southern Iraq.
Weir Oil & Gas is the first training provider in Iraq to receive approval to deliver OPITO-accredited SCQF Level 4 and 5 occupational training qualifications in Basic Maintenance Practices and Maintenance Practices for Instrument, Control, and Mechanical Operations. The local delivery of these training programs will help ensure the availability of an in-country, technically skilled, knowledgeable and safety-conscious workforce.
Over the past three years, Weir Oil & Gas has delivered more than 15,000 combined internal and external training hours, mostly to Iraqi personnel, encompassing classroom-based learning and on-the-job training.
With a constant presence in Iraq since 2014, Weir Oil & Gas has increased its local content through skills development and the structured training of local nationals, focusing on oil and gas services professionals.
The collaboration with OPITO aligns with Weir Oil & Gas' vision to become a leading provider of oil and gas industry training and skills development in the Middle East, through enhancing the delivery of training to local nationals, and supporting skills development projects in Iraq and Oman for a portfolio of companies that includes major global oil companies.
Ronan Le Gloahec, President of Weir Oil & Gas Eastern Hemisphere, said, "Our partnership with OPITO will allow us to provide unparalleled local content and training for oil and gas personnel in Iraq, creating a solid and necessary foundation for companies operating in the region to flourish."
Richard Roberts, Regional Vice-President, MEA of OPITO, said, "Iraq's success as an oil and gas producer will, in part, be reliant on its ability to build a strong local talent pool through ensuring the availability of vocational technical skills in-country that are commensurate with international benchmarks. Our collaboration with Weir Oil & Gas is an important step forward in ensuring the delivery of accredited training programs in Iraq and the Middle East and will help safeguard the continued development of a competent energy sector workforce."
UNICEF receives 26 million from Germany to support national systems and ensure vulnerable children in Iraq receive quality basic and social protection services in Iraq
The German Government, through its Development Bank, the Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW), has contributed 26 million Euros to UNICEF in order to help the agency in its ongoing efforts to assist the Government of Iraq in strengthening its systems and improve access to quality basic services and social protection for children and their families.
This latest amount brings the German Government's total contributions to UNICEF Iraq to a total of 159 million Euros since 2015.
Vulnerable children and their families in Iraq are disproportionately affected by the lack of safe water, education, and social protection. The needs of the poorest have become even more acute as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and its secondary impacts, such as disruption in schools and health services, and rights violations, as well as rising poverty, all diminish the chance of vulnerable children to realize their basic rights to survive, be protected, and continue learning.
In light of the scale of the pandemic's effect particularly on children and their families, the German Government has reserved 6 million Euros exclusively for measures addressing COVID-19 related activities such as the Risk Communication and Community Engagement (RCCE) and the Infection Prevention and Control (IPC).
"This funding has come in at a critical time, when we should be doing all that we can to limit the effects of the pandemic on all children, especially the most vulnerable. Thanks to our German partner, we are able to scale up our efforts to support the Government of Iraq to strengthen national systems' ability to respond and provide better quality and coordination of the basic services that it provides, public social protection for children and their families, and help to train educators, counsellors and other professionals working with children," explained Hamida Lasseko, UNICEF's Representative in Iraq.
For his part, the German Ambassador to Iraq, His Excellency Dr Ole Diehl (pictured), emphasized that the international community can only win the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic by working together.
"Germany continues to support Iraq in its fight against COVID-19. This is why we have launched an extensive global COVID emergency program, under which also a sizeable COVID-19 response window is allocated for Iraq and our contribution assigned to this program respectively. Good health and sanitary infrastructure are paramount to contain the virus. More importantly, every one of us needs to take part in the fight against Corona by wearing masks, keeping up social distancing and observing rules of basic hygiene."
Since the pandemic broke, the number of children and adolescents who risk falling into poverty has doubled, from one out of five children and adolescents to over 2 out of every 5. Children and adolescents, who make-up more than half of the population in the country, are also the most at risk of experiencing poverty, service disruptions in critical basic services like primary health, water sanitation and hygiene, education and increase in rights violations.
"Investing in one's children is the best investment any nation can make. The Iraqi government needs our support to further develop its technical capacities, strengthen its systems, and deliver for its children. We are especially appreciative of the support of our German partner at this critical time when we are working with the Government to enhance its ability and systems to deliver better education, health services, water, sanitation and protection for every boy and girl in Iraq," added Ms. Lasseko.
There are 1.77 million people in need of humanitarian assistance and another 1.5 million who remain displaced and therefore exposed to higher risks of deprivation, violence and exploitation. The project which will be rolled out over 18 months, will target such populations.
The project focuses on long-term sustainability by strengthening national systems and capacities to provide integrated access to safe water, education and health services, protection, and social assistance, with the goal of enabling children to overcome poverty, practice their rights and fulfil their potential.
It will be implemented at the Federal level and in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, in partnership with the Ministries of Labour and Social Affairs, the Education, the Directorates of Education at sub-national levels, and national and international Civil Society Organisations.
Mais Abousy Sets Record as First Woman to Do Indoor Iron Distance Race, Calls Attention To Iraqi Children
Iraqi-American lawyer, Mais Abousy, set a record on Saturday, November 7, 2020, as the first known woman in the world to complete an indoor Iron Distance Race, using the feat to raise awareness of Iraq's orphans and vulnerable children.
Abousy's 140.6 mile indoor Iron Distance Race was a self-curated race at the St. James sports complex in the Washington, DC, area, featuring the theme "Suffer. Learn. Change." The race is a precursor to Mais's anticipated 140.6 mile attempt in Iraq 2022. The November 7th race - 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride, and 26.3 mile run - lasted 13 hours.
The race featured the US national anthem at the start and the Iraqi national anthem at the finish. For the last mile of the race, she was joined by the State Department's Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Near East Affairs Joey Hood and the Deputy Chief of Mission for the Embassy of Iraq in Washington DC M. H. Al-Fityan.
Mais was also joined for portions of the race by Iraqi-American brothers, Yaseen Eldadah (below left) who joined the swim and Elias Eldadah (also ICF Youth Liaison, D.C.) for the bike ride (below right) joined by their father, Dr. Zayd Eldadah.
Also joining Mais in the race was Dr. Nizar Hussein (swim), Haidar Al-Kindi (bike), and Zeena Rahman, President of Enabling Peace in Iraq Center (EPIC) (run).
Mais Abousy was featured in a Washington, DC WJLA ABC 7 TV news interview and in a pre-race article in the "Washingtonian" magazine where she shared more of her story. Abousy has previously run several marathons and a triathlon to highlight the cause of Iraq's children.
The Iraqi Children Foundation (ICF) expresses its deepest gratitude to Mais Abousy for being a champion for Iraq's voiceless orphans and vulnerable children.
* * *
ICF intervenes with love and hope in the lives of children at risk of abuse, neglect, and exploitation by criminals, traffickers, and extremists. ICF provides legal protection, psychosocial services, nutrition, and education to orphans, street kids, and other vulnerable children. For more information or to donate, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.iraqichildren.org
The post Iraqi Woman Sets Record, Calls Attention To Iraqi Children first appeared on Iraq Business News.
Calls for expression of interest: training on GBV reporting during health crises
The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in Iraq will conduct in collaboration with UNFPA Syria Hub a training session for Arab-speaking journalists in Iraq on GBV reporting during health crises: COVID-19.
This training aims to provide participants with advanced skills in covering gender-based violence in light of the Covid-19 pandemic in Iraq and emphasise the role of the media in highlighting cases by producing good quality reports based on ethical standards.
The programme targets 25 journalists from all Iraqi provinces through the implementation of four online training workshops. Each session lasts one hour twice a week every Monday and Wednesday from 26 November until 10 December through the Zoom.
After the training, each participant will be required to prepare a report/story on gender-based violence in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Who can apply?
- The journalist should have experience in covering cases of violence
- The journalist should be able to speak and write in Arabic
- The journalist should present samples of previous journalistic work (links to press materials in the same field are preferred)
- The journalist should be committed to cover stories of GBV cases according to the standards delivered during the training
- The journalist should have a stable internet connection
- The journalist should be able to work full time during training days
How to apply?
Sunday 15 November 2020
The post Calls for Expression of Interest: Training on GBV Reporting first appeared on Iraq Business News.
Why you should come to the IBBC Conference in Dubai, entitled 'Opportunity in Adversity'
On 19th November the Iraq Britain Business Council (IBBC) is holding its Autumn conference in person at the Address hotel Dubai Marina.
Some would say it's a brave decision, considering COVID, but others are keen to take up the challenge and opportunity to engage, meet, listen to expert business voices of Iraq and overall have proper opportunities for networking.
Not only do we have a good level of members signed up to attend, but also one of the strongest line ups of speakers, ready and willing to address the opportunities for Iraq in 2020.
The backdrop to this conference is not just COVID, but the election of a new American President, rising oil prices, a fundamental change in the way oil and gas companies are globally which will also affect their work in Iraq, a Government willing and able to make significant changes, in the way finance operates, investors can start up and a white paper that will impact a range of activity and on-going digital modernisation.
All these topics will be covered, and we are expecting significant speakers and attendees from our membership and the Ministry of Oil, the Deputy Minister of Electricity, and online from the World Bank, Central Bank payments director and Ministry of Communications, Mastercard and Zain Cash to name a few.
You can hear about one of the biggest changes as the oil and gas companies redefine themselves as Energy companies, and vertically integrate fuel with electricity generation. BP, Shell, Siemens and Ministry of Electricity will address this and other matters on the Energy panel.
On the Finance panel, we are looking at how to operate successfully in the present very challenging financial situation of the country. New proposals by the Government's white paper will also be discussed and how these align with the need of private sector.
Finally, the Tech Forum with the World Bank on the digitisation of Iraq, the progress that is being made with GOI, and to hear from Mastercard and GSMA and Thinkbank on consumer online behaviour and attitudes.
Now is a great opportunity for change and we believe Iraq won't let the opportunity go to waste. Iraq is at a critical inflection point and the Government understands the importance of encouraging the private sector as a vehicle to solving investment, jobs and diversifying the economy at this time, which is why we are expecting a strong attendance from members and speakers alike from sectors crucial to Iraq's future.
As we look to the coming year, we see a Government making good decisions, investing in large projects, understanding the importance of diversifying its economy and also providing work and opportunity to its young population.
Now is the time to turn up, attend and make plans for the future of Iraq, and we look forward to welcoming you.
Please register here:
The post Why you should come to IBBC Conference: Opportunity in Adversity first appeared on Iraq Business News.
Their voice, our equal future, time to focus on girls in Iraq
11th October marked the International Day of the Girl Child, a day dedicated to girls' empowerment, fulfilment of girls' rights and solving challenges that they face.
This year, the global theme is "My Voice, Our Equal Future," a reminder to listen to girls , understand the changes they want to see and to ensure that all of them have an equal opportunity for a bright, safe and healthy future.
In Iraq, the challenges experienced by girls and boys are many and complex. Violence against children, including young people is unacceptably high in Iraq, with 80 per cent facing violence at home and in schools. Many girls in Iraq, like millions of girls around the world, suffer from female genital mutilation, child marriage, sexual harassment and abuse, and other harmful practices.
Girls across Iraq continue to be particularly affected by increased insecurity, which in turn has imposed restrictions on movement that affects their access to education, protection and jobs. Young girls are keen to make the most of opportunities, have specific interests, identities and experiences and are keen to share accountability in their development, exercise of human rights and ensure their gender-differentiated needs.
The COVID-19 pandemic and restrictions on movement have elevated risks for girls to be violated and abused. The number of gender-based violence cases has increased since the onset of COVID19 pandemic in Iraq according to the Protection Cluster Monitoring in Response to COVID-19 (August 2020)
According to the GBV Information Management System's data of the first two quarters of 2020, 23 per cent of the incidents of violence reported to the service providers were among children and adolescents, of which 6 per cent were aged between 0 and 11 years, and 17 per cent were aged between 12 and 17 years old.
Interviews conducted by the United Nations with families living in displacement camps across Nineveh governorate, affirm that child marriage remains a frequent practice and a coping mechanism for families living in poverty to reduce the financial strain.
Education and learning are some of the best ways to empower girls and protect them against violence, exploitation and social exclusion by providing them with the opportunity to build a better life for themselves, their families and their communities. To make education and learning accessible and empowering for girls, it needs to be safe and gender sensitive.
Having zero tolerance to bullying, cyberstalking, sexting and harassment should be a priority for all as part of the national COVID-19 efforts to reimagine school systems and learning, we must address violence against girls of all ages in and around classrooms and on digital learning platforms. Because girls have higher risk than boys to experience violence, verbal and sexual abuse, a multi-sectoral approach is needed to address all risk factors and cases. Youth-friendly, accessible and quality education and learning, health and social services are essential for girls' empowerment and their development.
Ending gender-based violence is not a far-fetched dream; this is a real possibility. All that is needed is for girls to have access to formal education, , skilled, civically engaged, healthy, supported, and protected at home, in institutions and at the community. The alternative is devastating with a lasting negative and damaging impact to the health, education and well-being of Iraqi girls.
We call on the government, civil society organisations, the private sector, faith-based groups and the international community to accelerate their efforts to:
- Improve equal access to quality primary and secondary education including life-skills
- Promote access to alternative learning opportunities for out of school adolescents and youth, in the form on life skills and citizenship education, including social and business entrepreneurship for improved learning to work transition;
- Increase capacity of the health sector to provide adolescents and youth-friendly health services across the country, with focus on girls; Ensure that girls - survivors of GBV access free and quality specialised services anchored in survivor-centred and age-appropriate approaches
- Mobilise girls, boys, parents and leaders through civic and social engagement to challenge discriminatory gender norms and create real social, economic and civic opportunities for all girls;
- Draft and enforce legislation, such as the anti-domestic violence law and child law, to protect girls and prosecute those who harm them;
- Implement the recommendations by the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, including to criminalise, forced, temporary and child marriage;
- Increase availability of child protection services for girls and young women.
Girls can be powerful agents of change, and nothing should keep them from participating fully in all areas of life. We must come together and show our commitment by dedicating resources for girls to realise their rights and fulfil their full potential.