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WB supports ECRRP for cyclone-hit people

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Staff reporter
The World Bank is supporting the Government of Bangladesh through the Emergency Cyclone Recovery and Restoration Project (ECRRP) to help restore the lives and livelihoods of people in the coastal belt of Bangladesh affected by the Cyclone Sidr and Cyclone Aila in 2007 and 2009 respectively.
The project, which also aims at building long-term disaster preparedness for the country, started in December 2008 and the World Bank has so far contributed US$ 324 million in this project, said a World Bank press release.
In addition to World Bank financing, the project also received contributions from the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (US$2.96 million), Bangladesh Climate Change Resilience Fund (US$25 million), and KfW (Euro 3.82 million). The total available funds for this project are now US$356.9 million.
The release said that the impacts of the project on the beneficiaries in the targeted area and the quality of agricultural technology interventions in the context of restoration of their livelihoods and in building resilience are encouraging.
According to a recent survey, there has been 36 percent reduction in poverty incidence (14 percent of households in the project intervention area are now below poverty threshold vis-à-vis 50 percent during a baseline survey in 2010) in the affected area.
The project has so far rehabilitated and improved 240 cyclone shelters in coastal area that are now being used as schools or for other community purposes. These shelters are equipped with water supply, sanitation and electricity facilities.
The project has also completed construction of another 42 new multi-purpose cyclone shelters. The project also supports building polders and rehabilitation of embankments as a means of increasing security to at risk livelihoods. So far 260 kms of embankments are repaired, along with sluices in the polders.
The project is also supporting the preparation and implementation of the first phase of a 15-year government program for disaster risk reduction. The total fund available for this project includes recent World Bank approval of US$140 million additional finance to support scaling up the construction and rehabilitation of critical infrastructures in the coastal areas.

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