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UNICEF and WFP start distribution of emergency funds to vulnerable families

by: Dominica Vibes News - December 4, 2017
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Permanent Secretary of the Honorable Ministry of Social Services and Gender Affairs, Helen Royer

The Government of Dominica in collaboration with the World Food Program (WFP) and the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) through the Ministry of Social Services has launched a three month Emergency Cash Transfer Program aimed at assisting vulnerable groups and families.

Permanent Secretary of the Honorable Ministry of Social Services and Gender Affairs, Helen Royer stated that the Emergency Cash Transfer Program was an initiative between UNICEF and the World Food Program to help vulnerable persons buy the basic needs post Hurricane Maria.

“I am delighted on behalf of the Honorable Minister of Social Services and Gender Affairs to be at this national briefing which focuses on the launching of a major initiative led by the Government of Dominica in collaboration with the World Food Program and the United Nations Children Fund. In response to the current emergency created by Hurricane Maria, UNICEF and WFP received cabinet’s approval to partner with the ministry of Social Services through the Welfare Division to design and implement a join emergency cash transfer for the most vulnerable households in Dominica and their children,” Royer stated.

According to Royer, over eight thousands households are set to benefit from the emergency cash transfer program.

“It is important to note that this support is a top up to those already receiving while others will stand to benefit. We are expecting about 25,000 persons or approximately 8,300 households to benefit from this program. This is welcoming as it will augment our social support network and help our beneficiaries to be more resilient in this time of crisis,” she noted.
Royer added that persons on public assistance will begin receiving payments as early as today.

“Persons receiving public assistance have automatically been included in the emergency cash transfer program, while families of foster parents are also automatically included. Payments for the most vulnerable will begin as of today, December 4th, 2017. We will begin with them and then start off with persons who are not on public assistance,” said the permanent secretary.