PRESS RELEASE, By MSDG
Every Gambian is aware of the value of diaspora remittances, and almost every household benefits from these financial inflows directly or indirectly. According to the World Bank, the Gambian economy is more dependent on remittances than any other country in Africa, followed by Lesotho, Comoros and Cape Verde. Through their remittances, the Gambian diaspora supports their extended families and friends by paying for housing, feeding, education, healthcare and other necessities, and priorities of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In February 2023, the Central Bank of The Gambia confirmed that the verified remittance inflow in 2022 was seven hundred and twelve million, four hundred and fifty-four thousand, three hundred and three US dollars ($712,454,303), equivalent to over 42 Billion Dalasis.
However, the diaspora also provides financial and technical support to hundreds of thousands of people who are not family members. They do this through the community projects, social enterprises and job-creation ventures they operate in rural and urban Gambia, funded through collective remittances, donations and impact investments. This was recognised by GK Partners and reflected in the Migration and Sustainable Development in the Gambia (MSDG Project) which it initiated in 2017. In addition to working with the Central Bank on remittances, in 2020, the MSDG Project set up a Diaspora Development Fund (DDF) to co-finance the community and development projects led by diaspora professionals and their local partners in Gambia. DDF grants of four hundred and five thousand Euros (€405,000), equivalent to about 25 Million Dalasis have been awarded to 51 Diaspora Fellows. These Fellows from the Eighth Region (the diaspora) are running projects in the seven territorial regions of the country.
Through the remittance, DDF and other activities led by the MSDG Project and others, Gambia’s importance is recognised in global discourses on remittance and development. Gambia is one of the seven country case studies to be presented at the United Nations Global Forum on Remittances, Investment and Development (GFRID) to be held in Nairobi, Kenya on 14-16 June 2023. On Sunday, 11 June 2023, people can join the open online forum to hear from the MSDG Diaspora Fellows themselves, about the DDF projects, covering different sectors including youth mental health; child protection; skills development and employability; media and technology; culture and creative industries; financing for women farmers; construction of health and maternity clinics; refurbishment of mortuary facilities; and provision of laboratory services.
Topic: Showcasing Gambian Diaspora Development Projects
Date & Time: Sunday, 11 June 2023, 2:30 PM to 5.30 PM (GMT / Gambia Time)
Join Zoom Meeting:
Contacts: Clare Demba – Communications Associate: [email protected] +220 314 2448
Pa Musa Sidibeh – Associate Director: [email protected] +220 701 6571