The Swedish International Development Agency is teeing up 2013 relief for the Democratic Republic of the Congo early due to the worsening refugee crisis there. The money is expected to be disbursed early next year.
This year’s humanitarian aid to Congo, approved last week, totals 110 million Swedish kronor ($16 million) — the same as last year. In addition, Sida has proposed allocating 80 million Swedish kronor from next year’s budget already. Sweden follows a biennial appropriation cycle.
The money will go to the Democratic Republic of the Congo Pooled Fund, a multilateral fund managed by the U.N. humanitarian coordinator that focuses on health, education and other sectors. The fund is open to U.N. organizations and nongovernmental implementing partners, and given out twice a year or more often in emergency cases. Just over half of its grants in recent years have gone to local NGOs.
Earlier this year, the Swedish government pledged 70 million Swedish kronor for the work of a variety of groups operating in Congo, including the International Committee of the Red Cross, Danish Refugee Council, U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and Médecins Sans Frontières.
Sweden has traditionally been one of the top humanitarian donors to Congo, but in recent years, its support has been somewhat lagging behind others. So far this year, Sweden has provided $818 million, or 0.3 percent of global humanitarian aid to Congo, according to OCHA.
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