US Ambassador Earl Miller has visited Kalyanpur slum where the locals received food assistance through a new US government program funded by the US Agency for International Development (USAID), reads a press release.
US Ambassador Earl Miller, was accompanied by Dhaka North City Corporation Mayor Md Atiqul Islam.
World Food Programme's Country Representative Richard Ragan and BRAC's Executive Director Asif Saleh, responsible for implementing the program in Kalyanpur Bosti and Sattala Bosti (Mohakhali), also participated in the visit.
This programme will provide aid to 50,000 people in these areas through cash-based transfers to help them meet their food and basic needs, through purchases at local vendors for foods, including fresh vegetables as well as offering deliveries of food baskets for families quarantined when a family member is ill with Covid-19, reads the press release.
"Walking around Kalyanpur and talking with residents of this neighbourhood, I witnessed how valuable this food assistance programme is," said Miller.
"This program is an example of the great partnership the US government has with Bangladeshis, with small businesses here in Dhaka, with the Government of Bangladesh, and with organisations such as the World Food Programme and BRAC. By working together, we are all stronger and can help each other make it through this pandemic," he stated.
This new initiative is part of the latest efforts by the US government to provide aid to countries responding to the effects of Covid-19.
Since the beginning of the outbreak, the US government has committed more than $1.5 billion worldwide in emergency health, humanitarian, economic, and development assistance specifically aimed at helping governments, international organisations, and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) fight the pandemic.
In Bangladesh, the US government has so far provided over $56.5 million in total from all agencies to support COVID-19 response efforts, reads the statement.
The US government, through USAID, has provided more than $7 billion in development assistance to Bangladesh since 1971.
In 2019, USAID alone provided over $200 million to improve the lives of people in Bangladesh through programs that expand food security and economic opportunity, improve health and education, promote democratic institutions and practices, protect the environment, and increase resilience to climate change.