The Aral Sea's drying up has caused a whole range of socio-economic and environmental consequences, including land degradation, a loss of biodiversity, climate change, and health deterioration among the region's population. Capitalizing on the successes and lessons learned from the previous UN Joint Programme on Sustaining Livelihoods Affected by the Aral Sea Disaster, a new phase was launched. Programme with joint efforts of four UN Agencies in Uzbekistan (UNDP, UNESCO, UNFPA and UNV) aims to mitigate inter-connected risks to human security as well as facilitate sustainable financial support through the establishment of a Multi-Partner Human Security Fund for the Aral Sea.
The Human Security concept implies establishing adequate governance systems and sound policies, as well as enhancing economic opportunity, education, health care and environmental security. The Programme objectives is in line with the Government priorities as defined in the State Programme on development of the Aral Sea region for 2017-2021. It also articulates the focus of four UN Agencies regarding the implementation of SDGs in line with national SDGs priorities.
1. Address the human security needs of populations affected by the Aral Sea disaster at the local and national levels
· Expand employment and improve income generation of rural communities through innovative projects to promote economic, environmental and social security as well as development of the sustainable tourism;
· Improve local ownership through implementation of community development plans, including access to basic social services, such as drinking water, electricity and renewable energy;
· Enhance the capacity of the healthcare providers to deliver quality services on family planning, mother and child health, and antenatal care as well as awareness raising of local population to prevent different diseases.
2. Establish a well-coordinated financial mechanism as a way to promote and mainstream the human security approach in the region
· Integrate Human Security concept at the national level in formulation of socio-economic policy, development and strategy planning of the Government;
· Provide support to national and regional authorities to design policy and strategy in human security and identify the multi-dimensional human security risks and their consequences for communities affected by the Aral Sea disaster;
· Establish a Multi-Partner Human Security Trust Fund for the Aral Sea region (MPHSTF).
- The needs assessment aimed at conducting indepth analysis of the root-causes of different human insecurities in the region was completed which will be used to develop the evidence-based regional strategy to promote effective mobilization of technical and Financial resources to the Aral Sea region;
- The visit of representatives of the multi and bilateral donor organizations to Karakalpakstan conducted to foster joint efforts in establishing MPHSTF;
- International conference on development of sustainable tourism in Uzbekistan (the case of Karakalpakstan) was held in Nukus city;
- Interagency Working Groups comprised by the specialists of the relevant ministries and agencies endorsed by the Cabinet of Ministers to intensive the work on the establishment of the MPHSTF;
- Resource Mobilization: $120,000 mobilized from the SDC, and $100,000 from the “Coca-Cola” Foundation to promote effective and rational use of irrigation water resources as well as provide access to drinking water for the rural communities;
- By mobilizing communities, social infrastructure project on electrification completed, projects on school building construction and 2 water supply projects are in process (overall number of expected beneficiaries is 24,900). 6 projects have been funded to create 20 job places in the areas of food processing and service delivery;
- 48 government authorities enhanced their skills on HS concept, regional development strategy, budget management and gender mainstreaming;
- 690 rural women were trained on CEDAW, reproductive health and entrepreneurship. 170 healthcare providers trained on quality family planning services and antenatal care;
- 50 ha demo plot on sand stabilization, 30 ha on pasture territories created (AF-parallel funding).
· Formulate the Development Strategy for the Aral Sea region to be used as a Programmatic Framework for the Multi-partner Human Security Trust Fund for the Aral Sea Region;
· Enhance the partnership with the development partners aimed at restoring the ecological balance and socio-economic development of the Aral Sea region, through cooperation in establishing the MPHSTF and implementation of the practical joint projects;
· Establish a Multi-Partner Human Security Trust Fund for the Aral Sea region that would provide social and economic development, preserve ecological balance, and recover the flora and fauna in the region.