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CSO CiDA meets with Shida Kartli Regional Government to Discuss IDPs

By Etuna Tsotniashvili
Friday, December 14
On December 13th Care International in the Caucasus and CSO “Civil Development Agency” (CiDA) organized a meeting with the Chair of the Shida Kartli Regional Council, Zviad Khmaladze. The meeting was held as part of the project "Stabilization and Integration of IDPs into Mainstream Georgian Society" (SIIMS) that is trying to improve the livelihood of IDPs (Internally Displaced Persons) in the region as well as creating socio-economic ties between IDPs and local communities.

The meeting was attended by members of seven communities where IDPs live in the Shida Kartli region: Berbuki, Karaleti, Khurvaleti, Sakasheti, Shavshvebi, Skra and Verkhvebi.

Chair of the Regional Council Zviad Khmaladze, expressed his gratitude to CARE and CiDA representatives and promised that the Regional Council will do its best to address problems faced by IDPs in the coming year. Khmaladze stressed the importance of community involvement in identifying and solving problems in local villages. Khmaladze promised that community representatives will work together to solve the various problems and challenges the villages face.

A survey carried out in the seven communities showed that the community problems are almost the same in each settlement. The most acute ones are irrigation, water and gas problems, road infrastructure and kindergartens.

“The event is the part of the advocacy process, carried out by the Civil Development Agency together with CARE. I had a series of preparatory meetings with the Kvemo and Shida Kartli regional governments, where we discussed the priorities and problems cited by IDPs. We believe that the regional governments will make addressing IDP issues a priority when drafting their 2013 budgets. From our side we will try to involve all actors and get donor mechanisms to work more effectively to support IDPs,” CiDA Advocacy Manager Juba Maruashvili said at the meeting.

The SIIMS project has been jointly implemented by CARE Norway and CARE International in the Caucasus along with local implementing partner - Civil Development Agency (CiDA). The project is financed by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and its total budget is 19 Million NOK (2.9 Million USD). The project started in July 2009 and will last for 3 years.