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#MasterCard announces first major partnership with @ActionAid, supporting emergency relief in India

New Delhi: 30 July 2015 – MasterCard has announced a US$100,000 donation to support ActionAid, helping them to provide emergency relief and reduce the impact of extreme weather events in India. This is the first time MasterCard has partnered with ActionAid.

The death toll from the recent heatwave earlier in the year reached over 2,500. While the heat has subsided, ActionAid’s local partners are reporting that the impact of this extreme weather event is still being felt. Unseasonal flash floods, dust, hail storms and untimely heavy rain in all six states, in particular Uttar Pradesh, have destroyed crops and water resources, and continue to impact livelihoods.

With the help of MasterCard’s donation, ActionAid will be providing immediate emergency relief, as well as longer term support for livelihood recovery and government compensation. The goal is to ensure that people are better equipped to sustainably manage the impact of heatwaves and other natural disasters in the future.

The proposed project will benefit 17,000 marginalised people, including small holder farmers, internally displaced tribal groups and fishing communities, as well as pregnant mothers, the elderly and other marginalised groups. The activity will focus on six of the worst affected states in India: Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Gujarat.

Key activities will include the reconstruction of defective water storage systems for roaming livestock; the promotion of rainwater harvesting measures to improve water retention and soil quality; the set-up of “Community Grain Banks” as a means for food storage during emergencies; and the provision of paid employment schemes for low income families experiencing low-level agricultural outputs. 

In addition, ActionAid will also advocate for the provision of compensation by the government, including informing people when they are eligible for compensation. ActionAid will also ensure people are better equipped to deal with future extreme weather events and other natural disasters by forming Village Disaster Management Committees.

Finally, MasterCard’s support will also help to finance a short study on how people were affected by the heatwave; this study will identify ‘best practice’ on how international organisations and local partners can best respond in the future.

Porush Singh, Senior Vice President, Core Products, Global Products & Solutions, Asia/Pacific (AP), MasterCard, said: “The devastating impact of such extreme weather events is felt throughout India. MasterCard has worked in the country for many years and we are committed to supporting and empowering India as it continues to grow and develop. A key part of this is supporting financial inclusion and establishing partnerships that support local government, NGOs as well as the communities we work in. Our new relationship with ActionAid in India is one important example. We are proud to support them in their valuable work to ensure that everyone is better able to manage the consequences of extreme weather in future.” 

“We are delighted to be partnering with MasterCard in our efforts to help communities in India who have been affected by recent extreme weather conditions to recover and to build their resilience to future disasters, especially those belonging to vulnerable groups, who are the worst affected. I am confident that our collaboration will be a great example of how, by working in partnership, we can support vulnerable people, particularly women, to develop their leadership capacity and improve community-led disaster management for the future," said Sehjo Singh, Director, Programme and Policy at ActionAid India.

Editor Note

About MasterCard

MasterCard (NYSE: MA), www.mastercard.com, is a technology company in the global payments industry. We operate the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. MasterCard’s products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow us on Twitter @MasterCardAP and @MasterCardNews, join the discussion on the Beyond the Transaction Blog and subscribe for the latest news on the Engagement Bureau

About ActionAid 

ActionAid is a global movement of people working together in over 40 countries to achieve greater human rights for all and defeat poverty. We believe people in poverty have the power within them to create change for themselves, their families and communities. ActionAid is a catalyst for that change.

ActionAid India is part of the ActionAid global Federation. Established in 1972, ActionAid India helps over 6 million of the country’s poorest and most disadvantaged people in 25 states and 1 Union Territory in India. We partner with nearly 250 community-based organisations, non-governmental organizations, and alliances to collectively address poverty with a strong focus on women's leadership. 

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