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World Bank gives $92.71 million for Gambia RISE Project

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Press release – The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors has approved a US$92.71 million financing for The Gambia Resilience, Inclusion, Skills, and Equity Project (The Gambia RISE Project), with US$80.45 million from the International Development Association including US$20.00 million from the Crisis Response Window Early Response Financing, and an additional US$12.26 million in co-financing from the Global Partnership for Education.

The five-year, multi-sectoral project aims to improve how The Gambia builds, protects, and utilises its human capital by improving education quality and access, enhancing access to employment opportunities, and expanding social protection for the most vulnerable. Specifically, it focuses on boosting foundational learning in early childhood education through grade 4, expanding access to technical and vocational education and training (TVET) aligned with labor market demands, and enhancing income-generating opportunities for the poor and food-insecure.

Jason Weaver, senior economist and task team leader, highlighted the project’s dual focus within education: “The project aims to facilitate the entry of young individuals into the labour market through practical, high-quality vocational training. Concurrently, the goal is to strengthen early-grade literacy and numeracy, providing a solid foundation for subsequent learning, so today’s children have more and better opportunities in their future.”

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Christabel Dadzie, senior social protection specialist and co-task team leader, acknowledged the evolution of social protection efforts in The Gambia: “The government will scale up the Nafa cash transfer programme but also introduce new economic inclusion programmes, while reinforcing the overall social protection system to efficiently support vulnerable populations, particularly in responding to shocks.”

The Gambia RISE Project is expected to reach more than 272,000 beneficiaries, including youths, children, teachers, and poor, food insecure households; the multi-sectorial project deploys a comprehensive approach to sustainably improve livelihoods and educational outcomes.

“This project is critical for advancing our development objectives, in particular enhancing human capital outcomes in The Gambia. It aims to empower youth and support vulnerable communities, contributing to sustained economic growth and resilience. With activities like the social registry, the RISE interventions will emphasise the collection and utilisation of data, ensuring that resources are directed where they are most needed.” said Feyi Boroffice, World Bank Resident Representative.

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Aligned with The Gambia’s Recovery-Focused National Development Plan 2023–2027 and the World Bank Group Country Partnership Framework for FY22–26, The Gambia RISE Project introduces a coordinated approach to project implementation, leveraging the newly established Central Project Coordination Unit by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs for enhanced efficiency and effectiveness.

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