US, UNICEF announce MVR 11.5 million grant to support Maldives’ COVID-19 response

The United States government has provided a USD 750,000 (MVR 11.5 million) grant to UNICEF Maldives, to support the Maldivian government’s national COVID-19 response efforts – especially towards providing assistance for schools and community spaces to reopen safely.

According to UNICEF Maldives, the grant is funded by the Unites States Agency for International Development (USAID), and will be implemented by UNICEF in collaboration with the Maldivian government.

US Ambassador Alaina B. Teplitz said the Uinited States was committed to providing high-quality, critical and meaningful assistance to save lives, both in Maldives and around the world.

 “Lending a helping hand during the worldwide pandemic is part of our enduring commitment to the health and wellness of Maldivians,” she said.

According to UNICEF Maldives, the grant will support community engagement, focusing on parents, teachers, children, and adolescents as Maldives plans to reopen schools and public spaces in addition to other services.

 It will also provide water, sanitation, and hygiene supplies and strengthen effective infection control for the school reopening phase, and improve national data collection and analysis tools to support policy decisions for the wellbeing of Maldivian children and youth.

UNICEF Representative in Maldives, Dr. Munir A. Safieldin thanked the US for the grant.

 “We thank the United States for this generous contribution at a critical moment in the pandemic.  As lockdown measures are relaxed and services are due to gradually reopen, our efforts need to be scaled up to avoid a new surge of infections,” said Safieldin.”This support from the United States comes just at the right moment for UNICEF to continue to provide critical support to the Government of Maldives, and it will ensure that some of the most vulnerable people including children and young people are protected from COVID-19.”