But things are changing as schools are being built and staffed properly, local clinics are extending the lives of children and their families and power tracks are becoming roads. Britain, through its Department for International Development aids these poor countries by helping governments so that they may in turn help people to help themselves and therefore enable these countries to be less dependent on handouts from the west.
Other wealthy countries from the European Union, Japan and the United States also work with the DFID. DFID also works with and funds other Aid agencies and charities including the United Nations. Today, the UK will only provide aid to countries if their governments agree to make long term and lasting improvements to vital services like education and health care. They must also encourage the private sector to generate jobs.
These governments are held accountable and must provide regular reports on their progress. But there are poor countries whose governments are unable to make these changes. In such cases, the UK tries to give aid directly to the people by giving money to aid agencies and charities that are already working in those countries.
With the help of Britain, 1.5 million children in Tanzania are currently attending primary school with no cost to their families. In Bangladesh, child mortality has been drastically reduced both through improvements in living condition and the wide spread use of vaccinations at local clinics. Mozambique, one of the poorest countries in the world has implemented drastic reforms that have resulted in the decline of poverty levels.
Even though you now agree that aid works, there are many people who believe much of the aid money ends up in the hands of corrupt politicians and officials.
There are three solutions that enormously help with the administration of aid money:
- First, the fact that UK gives aid money directly to governments in exchange for assurances, regular reports of expenditure, progress and results.
- Secondly, is making local people totally aware of the amount of money they are supposed to be getting and give them a mechanism for complaint if they don’t get it.
- Lastly is encouraging tough and uncompromising action against anyone caught siphoning money for their own use.
Of course some may question the reason behind giving aid to a country that is manifestly corrupt. But why should a child be denied education or a mother denied healthcare just because some people in their government are corrupt?
The UK government believes that we cannot and should not walk away from our responsibilities. The goal is to half world poverty by 201. It’s a tough call but DFID is beginning to make a difference. It is estimated that every year, the British government though DFID, helps pull 2 million people out of poverty. There is no doubt mow that aid works