Political agreement reached for EU Aid to Most Deprived
Last month, the European Parliament and the Council of the EU reached political agreement over the Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD); a seven year programme (2014-2020) to provide essential aid to deprived people living in the EU. Its budget was approved at EUR 2.5 billion, with the possibility for interested Member States to allocate an additional EUR 1 billion in EU funds.
The European Commission will be in charge of its overall coordination, while decision making and implementation will be reserved for Member States. National governments now have to present seven-year Operational Programmes (OPs) outlining their priorities, target groups, procedures and partner organisations. FEAD grants shall be used to support the provision of food, clothing and other essential goods to the most-deprived, and also for non-material assistance promoting social inclusion, family support and access to services.
With a growing number of people in the EU living in poverty and at risk of social exclusion, FEAD will be an important tool for many Red Cross Societies to address the needs of the most vulnerable, over the next seven years. A number of Red Cross Societies in the EU are involved in the distribution of food aid packages, such as hot meals for children and the delivery of goods through social shops. In addition, many also provide considerable quantities of other material aid, including housing and hygiene articles, clothing and furniture. With their experience of last mile distribution and social inclusion projects, Red Cross Societies in the EU are expected to play a major role as partners for implementing FEAD, and to make sure that assistance is targeted to the specific needs of materially-deprived and excluded people in the EU.
Read about our Humanitarian Diplomacy work in the field of social policy.
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