There has been a new victory for international development in the House of Commons. The Bill promising that 0.7% of gross national income will be given in foreign aid has passed its first vote. This brings greater security of funding for life-changing projects in the Global South a big step closer.
It is just one step on a road towards the Bill becoming law, but it is a significant one. 164 MPs threw their voices behind the International Development Bill, commonly known as 0.7. Many of these MPs were contacted by supporters of Progressio and more than 40 other organisations.
Thank you if you were one of the people who helped international development start to guarantee a more secure future.
If you weren’t involved with this push for 0.7, don’t worry: it wasn’t your last chance. The Bill now enters a review stage before it comes back for a “Third Reading”. In the run up to that, we’ll need every supporter of people powered development to contact their MPs to ask them to turn up and say yes to 0.7.
The best way to stay up to date with what’s happening with this Bill is to sign up to our proactive email list. You can do that here.
What 0.7 would actually mean for people in the Global South
Having a law state that 0.7% of UK national income went to foreign aid would ensure more funds are available to support projects that are changing and saving lives around the world.
This includes projects such as Hear our voice, which Progressio has worked on with our partner, Zimbabwe AIDS Prevention and Support Organisation (ZAPSO). The project has offered lifesaving tests to truck drivers at risk of HIV and AIDS as well as reducing the stigma that surrounds HIV in the country.
One person who benefitted from Hear our Voice said, “We are vulnerable to HIV transmission due the nature of our work. We need this type of information to help us better our behaviour in regard to HIV and AIDS.
“Someone who tested positive for HIV during VCT described it as the turning point of his life. The test result revealed that the recurrent episodes of ill health could have their roots in HIV infection. He underwent relevant tests resulting in him being initiated on comprehensive antiretroviral therapy at a local hospital.
“Within weeks, he had gained weight and his throat infection and fatigue had ceased completely. Had it not been for the workplace HIV testing and counselling, this man’s health would have continued to deteriorate.”
0.7 matters because it means more stories like this will happen across the Global South. Thank you for your support so far and please continue to speak out for the Bill.