They are Australia’s independent monitor of international aid and trade policy. They focus on the systems that cause poverty and inequality and campaign to end the use of aid to further Australia’s economic national interest and the expense of the poor.
They challenge Australian government agencies, multilateral agencies, corporations and NGO that use aid and trade to undermine the ability of people in developing countries to determine their own.
They critically monitor the aid and trade activities of the government, and how they link to multilateral institutions, corporations, international financial institutions and NGO’s and respond and engage publicly to policy developments. They conduct detailed investigative research into programs which further the Australian national interests at the expense of the rights of people and the environment
They run committed long term campaigns by mobilising public support both locally and internationally to create awareness of how inequality and poverty is sustained.
They advocate to the government for policy change to ensure social and environmental justice is at the heart of the aid program.
They amplify the voices of their partners in Melanesia by taking direction from them to support the defence of customary land and counter the negative effects of AusAID land reform programs.
Aid/Watch formed in 1992 with a handful of activists concerned that Australia’s overseas aid program was making life harder for the very people it was supposed to assist. For over 20 years they have focused on demanding transparency and accountability for their foreign aid and trade. Today, they still work to confront aid programs that have more to do with exposing developing countries to corporate interests than addressing the root causes of poverty and inequality.
They are proud to run strong, successful campaigns generating positive policy reform and increased transparency, that hold programs that harm to account.
They believe that global poverty and injustice are actively produced, political and preventable. Inequality produces global power divides which drive poverty and environmental crises. As an organisation, they target policies and institutions that entrench these global inequalities, especially trade and aid policies, which often sustain and produce the inequality they purport to prevent.
AID/WATCH believes aid should:
-First and foremost be guided by the needs of communities, allowing people to determine their own development pathways and priorities
-Promote local ownership and sustainability
-Be based on principles of social and environmental justice and support sustainable and long-term self-determination; and
-Be a mechanism of global solidarity not a tool for Australia’s national interest.
The final outcome of aid should be to remove the need for aid
Aid/Watch is an independent, membership-based organisation that campaigns to end the use of aid to further Australia’s economic and security ‘national interests’. They focus on the causes not the symptoms of poverty and inequality, and campaign for aid and development that promotes social and environmental justice. They challenge Australian government agencies, international financial and trade institutions, corporations and NGOs that use aid, trade and other foreign policy mechanisms to undermine the ability of communities in the Global South to determine their own futures.
A world free from political and economic inequality, in which aid is no longer necessary and people can determine their own futures within a global framework of mutual respect for one another and for the environment.