On 4th July 2022 the House of Lords heard the repeat of a statement made by the Prime Minister in the Commons, on the Commonwealth Heads of Government, G7 and NATO meetings.
The Lord Bishop of Manchester: My Lords, we on these Benches support Her Majesty’s Government in their response to President Putin’s invasion, as I am sure will our General Synod which is debating the matter this weekend. Aggression must not be rewarded. My right reverend friend the Bishop of St Albans has previously assured this House that the Church stands ready to use its reach and connections to pave the way to a solution, and we also stand ready to use our extensive links to humanitarian organisations.
May I therefore ask the Minister to expand on what is being done to ensure UK aid support reaches all those who need it, particularly through the informal volunteer groups, which have so far received only 0.24%—less than £1 in every £400—of direct donations, and to consider how faith organisations, including the Church, can pay their full part?
Baroness Evans of Bowes Park (Con): I thank the right reverend Prelate for his comments, and I pay tribute to the Church and other faith organisations for all the help and support that they provide in a whole array—both in the UK to refugees coming over here but also within the region. We will continue to work very closely with faith groups, but also civil society more broadly, to provide the support that communities around the world need. We are a world leader in development, having spent more than £11 billion on ODA in 2021. In 2021, we were the third-largest ODA donor in the G7 and the fourth-largest overall donor by volume, and we remain very proud of our work in this area.
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