This is a difficult but very relevant question that we hear many people asking, and rightly so. It is true, billions of pounds worth of aid money has been given to a wide range of projects in Africa. Yet we are constantly told that we need to give more. It begs the question…where does it all go?
There is no doubt that Africa is moving forward and is a very different place to what it was a few decades ago. So there is a strong argument that the aid money has led to development and reduction in poverty. The Millennium Development Goals Report 2015 which is a strategy to eradicate poverty and huger, explains that while there have been may improvements in sub-Saharan Africa, the poorest and most vulnerable people are still no better off. The proportion of people living in extreme poverty and hunger has reduced from 57% in 1990 to 41% in 2015. That is clearly a great reduction, but falls a long way short of the target set in 2000 and shows that there is still a lot of work to be done.
What is worrying is that the Millennium Development Goals Report 2015 shows that there has been very little progress in sub-Saharan Africa food production. Hunger levels have not reduced by as much as was expected, and Africa is still not producing enough food. As the transition from the Millennium Development Goals to the Sustainable Development Goals is made, there needs to be a much greater focus on food production and investment in agriculture.
So there is not easy answer to the question, yes progress has been made, and yes more money is need.
The real question, to us is how has all of that money been spent and was it put to good use. The problem with the aid model is it often hides irresponsible spending which the donors never hear about.
This is why our model is different. The money is invested in farmers. The projects will be well planned, monitored, and we will support the farmers to ensure the best possible chance of success. Our supporters will be able to track the projects they are involved with and reinvest the money in new projects once it is paid back.
The key is to recycle the money, imagine if all of the money donated into Africa had been used to generate more money, then it could be recycled and used again. That way, Africa will learn to help itself and this constant need for aid will end.