An immediate freeze on new funding for ‘awareness projects’, in a drive to refocus aid spending, was announced today by DFID Secretary of State Andrew Mitchell.
Five existing projects will be stopped at once, saving over half a million pounds, while all other UK-based projects will be scrutinised in an urgent review. A further stop has been put on projects totalling more than £6.5m, with immediate effect.
Projects will be tested to ensure they are providing maximum value for money, with a halt on funding for any project that fails to meet tough results-based criteria.
Projects to be cancelled immediately include:
- £146,000 for a Brazilian-style dance troupe with percussion in Hackney
- £55,000 to run stalls at summer music festivals
- £120,000 to train nursery school teachers about ‘global issues’
- £130,000 for a ‘Global Gardens Schools Network’
- £140,000 to train outdoor education tutors in Britain on development
Funding will be redirected to areas where it will have a greater impact on global poverty.
Secretary of State, Andrew Mitchell, said:
People want to see British aid money saving lives and educating children in the world’s poorest countries.
There is a legitimate role for development education in the UK but I do not believe these projects give the taxpayer value for money.
At this difficult economic time, it is crucial that our money is spent where it makes the most difference.
Today I send a clear signal: value for money will be our top priority for aid.