Australia's Pacific 'step up', social enterprise paper, Amnesty petition, warnings in Greece and training links

Posted on 13 November 2018

+ Australia's 'Pacific step up' a 'step down'?
The Australian government announced a massive increase in aid to the Pacific  - a $2 billion infrastructure initiative, plus a $1 billion boost to export credit agency EFIC — to support investments which will have a “broad national benefit for Australia”.

Australian PM Scott Morrison implied the aid increase is a political move:

"Australia’s national security and that of the Pacific are intertwined,” Morrison stated, before hinting that Australia intends to curb China’s growing influence in the region. “My government is returning the Pacific to where it should be — front and centre of Australia’s strategic outlook, foreign policy and personal connections. This is our patch.”

Concerns were raised that this increase in the Pacific could mean a decrease in aid to the rest of the world:

"Recommitting to development cooperation with Pacific neighbours is a positive step. However, poverty alleviation and sustainable development should be the priority,” CEO of the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) Marc Purcell stated. “Australia’s aid budget is at its lowest level in history and the Prime Minister’s indication that the Pacific step up is coming ‘from within the budget’ is a problem. A step up in the Pacific is a step down in Asia and the rest of the world.”

Australia’s foreign aid budget currently sits at 0.22% of gross national income. Scott Morrison has confirmed there will be no increases to aid under his government.
+ Come to Lowy Institute talk on politics in the Pacific

Should we be worried about geo-politics in our region, or are we all getting hysterical?

Join the Lowy Institute and the CID team for the New Zealand launch of Lowy's Pacific Aid Map.

Jonathan will look at what's going on in the Pacific, and give a hot off the press report after attending APEC in Papua New Guinea; plus examine Australia and New Zealand's increased funding for the Pacific, and how aid investments are being affected by geopolitical struggles.

Jonathan Pryke is the Director of the Pacific Islands Program at the Lowy Institute based in Australia.

CID Christmas drinks and nibbles to follow the presentation.


Date: November 27
Time: 5.30pm
Venue: Russell McVeagh, 
Level 24, 157 Lambton Quay, Wellington
+ How data could bring peace

"How would the global development community operate differently if donors and NGOs shifted their thinking from asking what makes countries violent to what makes them peaceful and resilient?" writes Catherine Cheney in Devex this month.

“Understanding what creates sustainable peace cannot be found in the study of violence alone,” reads the “Positive Peace Report 2018,” which is published annually by the Institute for Economics and Peace and was presented at the Positive Peace Conference at Stanford University this month. 

+ Because we can't not say something!

10 top take aways from the American midterms from the Brookings Institute.
+ Upskill now and keep ahead of trends

Whether you are just starting your development career or you're a seasoned pro, professionals looking to keep up in this dynamic industry need to be lifelong learners, writes Devex.

Skills for Tomorrow is a Devex initiative to help you stay on top of the latest trends impacting careers and the various ways you can upskill, whether through traditional degree programs, online certificates, or hands-on experience. 

Explore the site to get ahead on what successful development pros need to know. Start now
+ Should we all be social enterprises now?

Social enterprises are the buzz word now, but what exactly is a social enterprise and how accountable are they for development impact?

For an international NGO (INGO), it can be a struggle to draw a line from project or programme to development impact and to prove you made a difference. Social enterprises can sometimes claim development impact without having to prove it.

Meanwhile, INGOs watch on in envy as self-sustaining social enterprises appear to bring about social change while avoiding fundraising events, complicated grant and reporting processes, visits to the government for funding and expensive public fundraising campaigns.

But INGOs have a lot to learn from social enterprises.
Research indicates millennials are driven by a global social conscience, with many choosing their career by issues they care about

According to a study by Victoria University’s Institute for Governance and Policy Studies (March 2018), trust in charities and (large) businesses are trending in opposite directions - moving down and up respectively, at almost the same rate (charities down 3% with business up 2%). While trust in charities remains higher overall than businesses (76% to 60%), the net decline is significant at 5%. There is also a lower proportion of no trust in businesses - 9% in 2018 versus 13% in 2016. The incoming generation (aged 18-29 in 2018) is also less trusting overall than those aged 30 and up, almost 10% below the national trust average of 47%.  

Even without reputational and trust issues, donating to charity in the traditional sense simply doesn’t make financial sense.  

But social enterprises in New Zealand also have challenges. The definition is one of them, a bit like trying to define what is 'organic' until a legal definition was introduced, defining what is a social enterprise is still a challenge:

Some of this difficulty comes from the tendency to think of “businesses” and “charities” in binary terms, whereas they really sit on a spectrum. Most businesses have some form of commitment to the social world, and, based on returns to the Charities Commission, 38% of income received by registered charities in NZ is earned through the provision of services and trade.

The age of the NGO isn't over. We have a lot to learn from each other, but we need to get better at collaborating.
 Read the full CID Brief on Social Enterprises and INGOs here.
+ Social Enterprise events coming up

CID Talk: Optimising the Effectiveness of Aid with Social Enterprise: 14 November - UNICEF, Wellington

What can social enterprise and NGOs learn from each other?22 November - GRIDAKL, Auckland
+ Health & safety templates, resources and toolkits

A reminder that these tools are available to CID members to help you with health and safety in your organisation.
+ Abundance Is The New Sustainability
Sustainability as a goal seems like such a low bar to set ourselves: "the avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance."

"I believe that "abundance" should be the new "sustainability": the collective goal that we set for ourselves as the 'moonshot' of our time.

"We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to not only repair our fraying planet and leave it in better shape than we found it but to lay the foundations for future generations to live in an era of peace and prosperity that has been impossible to contemplate until now."
+ Rohingya refugees face forcible return

The governments of Bangladesh and Myanmar are to push ahead with the repatriation of thousands of Rohingya this week, despite objections by the UN, and against the wishes of the refugees, who spoke of being “terrified” at being sent back.

More than 700,000 Rohingya have fled across the border to Bangladesh after a campaign of violence in Rakhine state in August 2017.

The reason for the rushed repatriation is said to be political pressure from both Bangladesh and Myanmar. An election is due in Bangladesh in December: the one million refugees in Cox’s Bazar are a sensitive political issue in the poverty-stricken country.

Rights groups are calling on Bangladesh to shelve the latest plan, saying returns now are “dangerous” and still “highly premature”.

On Friday, 42 NGOs, including Oxfam and Save the Children, released a joint statement warning that the repatriation of the Rohingya was premature and dangerous. This was echoed by Yanghee Lee, the special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, who this week urged the governments of Bangladesh and Myanmar “to halt these rushed plans for repatriation”.
+ UN plea for Greek islands

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, reiterated its call to Greek authorities to take urgent steps to address the humanitarian situation for around 11,000 asylum-seekers on the islands of Samos and Lesvos.

Conditions in the Reception and Identification Centers (RICs) on the two islands are abhorrent. With winter approaching and more people arriving, time is of the essence and emergency measures are needed.

"Conditions at the RICs have to be seen to be properly comprehended. At the Vathy RIC on Samos, the situation has been worsening. Despite having the capacity for 650 people, the centre and its surrounding area are currently hosting around 4,000 people – six times its design. By any measure, things are in crisis.

New arrivals are left having to buy flimsy tents from local stores, which they are pitching on a steep slope in adjacent fields. This offers little protection from the cold weather, without electricity, running water or toilets. There are snakes in the area, and rats are thriving in the uncollected waste."
+ The CID Weekly is proudly sponsored by
I Welcome Refugees: Handover at Parliament

Join Amnesty International on November 27, 2018, at Parliament to show the Minister for Immigration, Iain Lees-Galloway, your support for a pilot programme bringing refugees to safety. 

Community sponsorship is a new and unique model that runs in addition to the refugee quota. So far just over 20 people have found safety in New Zealand because of it. It enables community organisations and ordinary New Zealanders to support refugees. 

Join them as they hand over a report and the signatures of thousands of New Zealanders who are asking for the programme to be made permanent. (It's still not too late to add your name at

"We're urging the Minister, and cabinet, to see the potential of this programme to transform not just the lives of the refugees who are resettled but also the communities who come together to welcome them," says Amnesty.

Interested? Simply rsvp via Facebook:

Not available?  Be there in spirit  by signing the pledge 

+ CID Member of the Moment: UNICEF NZ

UNICEF works in NZ and globally to save children’s lives, to defend their rights, and to help them fulfil their potential, from early childhood through adolescence.

UNICEF NZ National Committee recently had a visit from Dr Pia Rebello Britto, UNICEF Chief and Senior Adviser for Early Childhood Development and Vathinee Jitjaturunt, Deputy Representative for UNICEF Pacific Multi-Country Office. Highlights of their visit included a trip to one of the first NZ Te Kōhanga Reo (Indigenous EC centre), He Whānau Manaaki o Tararua (Kindy Association with Pasifika ECCE centres), CID talk, government meetings with Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade on global and Pacific ECD and with Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet on the NZ Child Wellbeing Framework. 

Pia and Vathinee enjoyed the opportunity to understand the indigenous cultural lens that Maori and Pasifika use to frame their early childhood development.

Key messages shared by Dr Britto were

  • 43 percent of children in low- and middle-income countries are at risk of not achieving their cognitive potential.[1]
  • The relationship between genes and environment is closer than previously known
  • Timing matters - early intervention is the answer.
  • Multisectoral interventions are required such as nourishing the mind = nutrition, reducing toxic stress during early childhood, early brain stimulation.
  • Babies can't thrive if their worlds are disrupted by poverty, stunting and a lack of love and care.

Please find the presentation slides from Dr Britto's CID Talk here.

[1] The Lancet, "Advancing Early Childhood Development: from Science to Scale" 


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