Brussels, 30 October 2014
Poverty: Commission adopts Latvian programme to spend €41 million from Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived
The European Commission has approved today the Latvian Operational Programme to use the new Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD). Latvia will receive €41 million in current prices in the period 2014-2020 to support the provision of food and other basic hygiene and household items to those most in need in the country. This sum will be complemented by €7.2 million from national resources.
Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, László Andor, commented: "I welcome the adoption of this operational programme for Latvia, which will help the country to tackle its high rate of severe material deprivation. I also highly value the particular attention paid to children in families suffering the greatest difficulties. I believe that the Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived will play a key role to help Europe's most vulnerable citizens get a foothold in society and make a significant contribution to our fight against poverty".
In Latvia, the FEAD will be used similarly to the previous EU Food Distribution Programme for the Most Deprived People (MDP), which has provided food packages to around 150,000 people every year since 2006. Food distribution will be delivered by partner organisations such as NGOs and municipalities, in around 450 locations across the country.
19.5% of the total budget will support in particular households with children suffering from material deprivation, providing them with basic hygiene and household items, as well as educational material for school. Funding is planned also to support accompanying measures to promote social inclusion.
The European Commission has also approved today the FEAD Operational Programme for Lithuania (see IP/14/1233).
Launched in January 2014, the Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD) is a potent symbol of European solidarity. Its main aim is to break the vicious circle of poverty and deprivation, by providing non-financial assistance to some of the EU’s most vulnerable citizens. The FEAD is worth €3.8 billion in real terms in the 2014 to 2020 period.
The Fund will help to strengthen social cohesion by alleviating the worst forms of poverty. It will also contribute to meeting the Europe 2020 target of reducing the number of people in or at risk of poverty and social exclusion by at least 20 million by 2020.
The FEAD will support all 28 Member States' actions to provide a broad range of non-financial assistance to the most deprived people – be they individuals, families, households or groups of such persons. This assistance can include food, clothing and other essential goods for personal use such as shoes, soap and shampoo. It can also be used for actions that encourage social integration.
Each Member State will define the target group of ‘most deprived persons’ in its national operational programme. Member States can then choose which type of assistance they wish to provide and delivery methods, according to the particular situation in the country and their preferences.
The EU's Food Distribution Programme for the Most Deprived People (MDP) was from 1987 an important source of provisions for organisations working in direct contact with the least fortunate people providing them with food. It was created to make good use of the then agricultural surpluses. With the expected depletion of intervention stocks and their high unpredictability over the period 2011-2020, as a consequence of successive reforms of the Common Agricultural Policy, the MDP was discontinued at the end of 2013, being since then replaced by the FEAD.
For more information
Frequently asked questions on FEAD: MEMO/14/170
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