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Russia supports community resilience in Laos

As a new partner to the World Food Programme (WFP), the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations has provided more than US$1 million to the agency.
WFP is using this contribution to buy cooking oil, canned fish and construction materials for distribution to about 27,500 villagers in northern Laos who are suffering from the compounding effects of floods, droughts and pest outbreaks over the past two years.

In-kind food contributions from Russia arrived in Laos this week, to bridge gaps in food security caused by climate change impacts for communities in the northern provinces.
The Ambassador of Russia to Laos, Vladimir Kalinin, received the food supplies at the WFP warehouse in Vientiane on Tuesday.
WFP will use the newly arrived 36 metric tons of oil and the subsequent shipment of about 110 metric tons of fish to help build, repair or improve community infrastructure including fishponds, terrace farming, flood control and improved drainage, bridges and access roads.
Villagers will receive food in exchange for their labour, which helps them get through the lean season, at the same time improving their harvests and reducing the risks and impacts of climate shocks.
Resilience to natural disasters over time is being strengthened with the establishment of about 50 such community assets. Part of the money is being used to provide building materials to villagers for use in these projects.
In addition, they will receive training on how to manage and maintain these structures and how to prepare and respond to disasters.
The present support from the Russian Federation is part of the expanding relationship between Laos and Russia.
Ambassador Kalinin said “The Russian Federation attaches great importance to providing humanitarian and disaster relief assistance to the most vulnerable regions of the world.”
“In 2018 our country supplied more than 36 tons of basic commodities to people affected by the devastating floods in Attapeu province.”
“The Russian Federation established a reliable and efficient cooperation mechanism with WFP aimed at providing support to the communities in need. I am convinced that our recent contribution will allow thousands of villagers in northern Laos to benefit from our joint efforts to fight against the consequences of floods, droughts and other natural disasters,” the ambassador added.
WFP Country Director and Representative, Jan Delbaere, stressed the importance of partnerships in support of communities in Laos.
“We have long years of experience both globally and in Laos with creating community assets to help the lives of the most vulnerable communities,” he said.
“In partnership with the government, WFP has supported 650 communities in building village infrastructure since 2013, benefitting over 280,000 residents. We are excited and thankful to partner with Russia and are hoping to build on this first joint endeavour to further help communities become more resilient to climate change,” Mr Delbaere said.

By Times Reporters
(Latest Update March 4, 2020)

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