Have you been following the news recently?
You might have heard about some kerfuffle happening with the Government’s International Development Secretary (that’s the person who runs the aid department and leads on the UK’s work to end extreme poverty).
However, despite the kerfuffle in the news, the appointment of Penny Mordaunt MP to lead the Department For International Development (DFID) presents a great opportunity to step up the fight against poverty.
As Christians we believe that caring about poverty and injustice is key to our faith. Here are three things we would love to see Penny Mordaunt do during her time as the new Secretary of State for DFID, so together we can move closer towards ending extreme poverty.
1. Acting on Aid
The UK have a proud history of delivering quality aid to those in need around the world. It is vital that the UK continues to honour this legacy by maintaining our commitment to spend 0.7% of the UK’s income on international development. It is important that the focus of this spending remains on providing life-saving assistance and empowering people to raise themselves out of poverty.
2. Challenging Climate Change
If we want to beat poverty, we need to tackle climate change. All around the world people are being pushed further into poverty because the climate is changing fast – there are more extreme droughts and floods, and less reliable rain. We want to see DFID step up the fight against climate change and turn their Paris Agreement promises into action. We want to see them invest more money into renewable energy, like solar, for people in poverty. This is because not only will it create jobs, it is a cleaner energy so provides clean air.
3. Creating a Circular Economy
One day your smartphone will probably be recycled by a teenager on a rubbish dump, perhaps in Ghana, with no safety equipment. Shipments of electronic waste to poor countries are just one part of a huge and growing waste problem. Shifting to a circular economy where products are designed for safe repair and reuse rather than to be thrown away, can save lives at the same time as creating jobs for people living in poverty. We want DFID to champion this agenda.
What can you do?
Why not write to Penny Mordaunt MP or tweet her @PennyMordaunt today welcoming her to her new post and say why it is important that we (the UK) continue to do all that we can to end global poverty.