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Rehabilitation and Development Project - Phase II

Rehabilitation and Development Project in Gaza and the West Bank

 

This project is the second phase of the relief and development programme that ended in 1999. The overall project goal is to improve the living conditions and livelihood opportunities of rural communities in Gaza and the West Bank by increasing productivity, creating employment opportunities and improving access to social services. It sets out to meet immediate needs but also works towards longer-term development goals. Women have been especially affected by the closures and ensuing economic crisis, and the project particularly targets women who are alone in supporting their families to help them rebuild livelihoods. Project activities include:

  • rehabilitating and expanding essential social and physical infrastructure and services, which also provides a much-needed source of employment
  • providing women with access to savings and credit associations, training and basic equipment to help them establish or expand businesses
  • providing credit and other support services to small farmers, fishing communities and other rural enterprises

The women’s savings and credit associations component is being implemented by PARC and involves the empowerment of women through their organization, and supporting the process of group saving to provide informal financial services to provide productive and social assets and improve incomes.

The savings and credit systems launched under this project have set up 12 women’s saving and credit associations through PARC in villages in the West Bank and Gaza. By June 2006 6,986 members were organized into 135 groups under these associations, and almost 4,000 loans had been distributed for a total of about US$4.5 million. Specialized training has been provided for beneficiaries and in particular for elected members of the executive committees.

The project has also built 5 new roads in rural areas, 3 community centres, 1 village health clinic and kindergarten, and 53 new classrooms in 14 schools. The village community centres are designed to improve social life through recreational activities, women’s literacy and training classes and by providing a venue for community group meetings and activities. About 4,800 men, women and children are benefiting from the facilities. It has also rehabilitated irrigation water supplies to reduce water loss and increase the amount of water available for agriculture. Thanks to the rehabilitation of water networks in two villages, 110 households now have access to clean drinking water and no longer have to rely on water tank vehicles, which have become undependable because of road closures. All the project activities have generated employment in the target communities. They have inspired local people to continue with development plans on their own as, for instance, using their own resources to rehabilitate existing olive groves and install cisterns and water conservation systems.

Since the beginning of the project, a total of 28 community infrastructure construction projects have been completed, including:

  • 57 classrooms in 15 schools
  • two kindergartens; four women and youth multipurpose community centres
  • one clinic
  • one drinking water supply network for two villages
  • the Jericho agricultural wholesale market
  • 14 kilometres of rural roads
All micro-projects were completed with cofinancing from the communities themselves, averaging 15 per cent of the total cost. These works provided some 54,000 person-days of local labour and have brought improved facilities to over 43,000 men, women and children. In addition, the Jericho agricultural wholesale market is expected to benefit some 2,500 farmers growing vegetables and orchard tree crops in the Jericho area by providing central access to merchants. 
 
By the end of 2008, IFAD had also signed contracts worth approximately US$500,000 to construct one primary school and 10 kilometres of rural roads in the Ramallah area. Construction and rehabilitation of a further three rural pre-schools as well as an agricultural wholesale market in Gaza is in the pipeline.
 
Progress under the Women’s Livelihood Support component remains good, notwithstanding the challenges posed by the current political and economic climate. The Palestinian Agricultural and Relief Committees (PARC) is the main implementing agency of this component. By the end of June 2008, PARC had formed 175 savings and credit groups (SCGs), compared with 139 in December 2006, with a total of more than 7,000 members (compared with 6,076 in December 2006). And by the end of 2008, the level of members’ contributions stood at US$2.4 million, up from US$1.8 million in December 2006. Loans amounting to US$8.6 million have been extended to nearly 4,000 beneficiaries. Of the total amount of loans extended, about 38 per cent went to microenterprises while the remaining 62 per cent were directed at housing, education, and medical expenses, etc. The repayment rate currently stands at 82 per cent, up from 79 per cent in December 2006.
 

Source: IFAD


Status: Closed

Country

Palestine

Approval Date

05 September 2002

Duration

2002 - 2007

Sector

Credit and Financial Services

Total Project Cost

US$ 9.53 million

IFAD Financing

US$ 2.95 million

Co-financiers (Domestic)

Beneficiaries US$ 1.53 million

Financing Gap

US$ 3.75 million

Financing terms

Ordinary

Project ID

1100001262

Project Contact

Tawfiq El Zabri


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