Increase in Australian aid budget welcomed

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ChildFund Australia welcomes the Australian government’s move to increase the Australian aid budget in 2022-23 to $4.549 billion (from an originally estimated $4.335 billion in 2021-22), and the announcement of $324.4 million for the Pacific and Timor-Leste to help COVID-19 recovery.

The budget outlined on Tuesday evening, includes particular attention to new humanitarian funding and allocation for COVAX to increase much needed COVID-19 vaccination in the region.

Budget measures in-brief

  • Two-year, $324.4 million package of economic and social support for the Pacific and Timor-Leste to help recover from COVID-19;
  • Ring-fenced $85 million for COVAX to tackle vaccine global inequity; and
  • Spending $65 million on much-needed humanitarian to Ukraine.

From this year (2022-23), the Government will add 2.5% to the what it defines as the ‘base’ aid program. While this increase is termed ‘indexation’, it is important to note that this figure falls short of the most recent CPI figures of 4.25 per cent in 2021-22 and 3 per cent for 2022-23.

Margaret Sheehan, CEO ChildFund Australia said, “ChildFund Australia welcomes the increase in Australian aid for the Pacific and Timor Leste, the commitment to addressing regional health security,   – as well as the increased humanitarian funding for Ukraine and complex emergencies.”

The Emergency Action Alliance (EAA) will today launch their first emergency appeal in conjunction with media partner ABC.

A two-hour Concert for Ukraine will bring together leading names from the music world, including Ed Sheeran, Camila Cabelo and Manic Street Preachers, to raise money for victims of the humanitarian disaster.

Screening on ABC TV Plus this Wednesday, March 30 at 8.30pm (AEST) the all-star event will spread a message of hope and support while raising funds for EAA to address the immediate needs of people fleeing the conflict, and in the long road ahead.

This is the first emergency appeal for Emergency Action Alliance, bringing together 15 of Australia’s leading aid charities to form a single fundraising entity when major disasters take place overseas.

Viewers of the Concert for Ukraine will be able to donate throughout the evening, and in the following two weeks. All money raised will complement the recently announced $2 million Federal Government contribution to Emergency Action Alliance’s Ukraine Appeal, as well as proceeds from existing EAA member Ukraine appeals.

ChildFund Australia CEO, Margaret Sheehan said “The situation in Ukraine is dire. In the 25 years of work in this sector, I have never witnessed an emergency that has escalated to this scale over just a matter of weeks. This includes indiscriminate shelling; the targeting of civilians, hospitals, and schools; forced evacuations; and mass scale displacement. We will spend your money to provide cash and food assistance, critical medical supplies, urgent relief, and protection.”

Kerren Morris, Executive Director at EAA said: “This is the moment when we stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine who have had to flee a terrible conflict that continues to rage. Our 15 members believe this is the moment where we come together to raise more funds and have even greater impact during the recovery and rebuilding phase. We are excited to partner with ABC on this major appeal.”

Viewers will be able to donate money to the cause throughout the evening online through and via phone on 1300 939 000. Viewers will also be able to catch up on the concert on ABC iview for 30 days after the broadcast and continue to donate after the event has finished.

For more information:
• Kerren Morris 0410457869 or (EAA)
• Amelia Brock, 0430187161 or (ChildFund Australia)

About Emergency Action Alliance (EAA): EAA brings together 15 leading Australian aid charities at times of crisis overseas to raise funds quickly and efficiently. In these times of crisis, people in life-and-death situations need our help and our mission is to save, protect and rebuild lives through effective humanitarian response. EAA’s 15 member charities are: ActionAid Australia, Act For Peace, ADRA, Anglican Overseas Aid, Australia for UNHCR, Australian Lutheran World Service, Baptist World Aid Australia, Care Australia, Caritas Australia, CBM Australia, ChildFund Australia, Oxfam Australia, Plan International Australia, Save the Children Australia and Tearfund Australia.

Twelve of EAA’s 15 members are either responding or planning to respond in Ukraine or in neighbouring countries and will receive funds from this appeal. Some may work through trusted local partners while others will work through their European counterparts.

How to donate:
• Online:
• Phone: 1300 939 000
• SMS: Text ACTION to 0400 662 662