The Australian Embassy is supporting community level projects in the Comoros under its Direct Aid Program (DAP) targeting development needs in areas comprising health, women’s economic empowerment, livelihoods, human rights and climate change.
A delegation led by Ms Natasha Morris, Second Secretary, in charge of the Development Program at the Australian Embassy (Port Louis) is currently on a visit to the Comoros to take stock of the progress of the Australian DAP projects and engage with key stakeholders on development cooperation.
During the two-day visit, the Australian Embassy’s delegation will launch the project on reinforcing gender equality and promoting women’s participation in politics in collaboration with the European Centre for Electoral Support (ECES) and hand over certificates to training recipients of a project on raising awareness of violence against women and minors by the “Association pour le Dévéloppement de la Santé des femmes (ASDF)” in Moroni. The delegation will also visit the health centre of Nioumamilina which was supported under DAP in 2018 under a project of the Croix-Rouge française- Comores.
This visit coincides with the annual humanitarian mission of the medical volunteers of the Australian Doctors for Africa (ADFA) to the Comoros. Since 2014, this Australian NGO has included Comoros as a beneficiary of its programs targeting specific health needs such as club foot, rickets and obstetric palsy. In 2018, the ADFA medical mission performed 247 patient consultations, 24 surgeries, and provided training to 12 medical professionals at the Caritas Health Centre during a ten day visit. ADFA hopes to expand its collaboration in the health sector further in collaboration with the Comorian authorities.
In 2018, the DAP supported the launch of the Dis-Moi’s on-line Human Rights Education program in the Comoros. The on-line training platform targets civil society groups including people with disabilities to improve their knowledge and understanding of human rights norms and principles, the values that underpin them, and the mechanisms for their protection.
In the last two years, the Australian program has also supported other NGOs including the Association of West Badjini Municipalities for Development (ACBOD), le Réseau National Femme et Dévéloppement, Réseau Amani, Réseau Jeune Leaders pour la Paix and Caritas- Comores.
Australian Ambassador to the Union of Comoros HE Ms Jenny Dee who presented credentials in May 2018 said “Australia is committed to supporting local community development projects which contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in the Comoros.”
“In the health sector, I am pleased the Australian Doctors for Africa working with its partners in Comoros delivers programs to ensure those most in need, particularly children, benefit from specialized orthopedic surgeries and medical treatments.”
Australia and Comoros are both member states of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) and share common priorities including blue economy, maritime security and women’s economic development.
9 September 2019