We are about to witness potentially the most important election for a generation with Britain at a pivotal moment in its relationship with the rest of the world. 

In this General Election, it is critical to call on all candidates to commit to prioritising the world’s most vulnerable and support the ongoing lifesaving work of UK aid. The most vulnerable children in the world don’t have a vote, but on December the 12th we do. How we use it helps determine the direction our country will take, but also impacts the lives of some of the most vulnerable people on earth. The UK’s foreign and international aid policies have significant repercussions for them. This means your vote can and will make a difference.

World Vision UK, an Evangelical Alliance member, works across 100 countries to bring transformation to the lives of the world’s most vulnerable children. Compelled by our Christian faith, we have been working with people of all faiths and none for 70 years to reduce poverty and tackle social justice, walking with children and their communities to bring hope for the future. 

Protect UK aid

We believe that real change can be achieved when those at the highest levels keep the most vulnerable at the heart of all they do. The UK should be proud of leading the world in its commitment to spend 0.7% of Gross National Income on aid – a promise first made over 40 years ago and delivered in this decade. It is even enshrined in law. This is less than two pence in every pound that the government spends and makes a huge difference.

UK aid has saved countless lives in humanitarian disasters and ensured millions of children have access to education in some of the toughest places in the world. Significant progress has been made in reducing extreme poverty, but there is still a long way to go. We must not abandon those who need our help.

Defend DFID

The UK’s Department for International Development is a global leader in aid and development, delivering quality, accountable programmes. However, despite its excellent reputation, some are calling for the department to lose its independence and be merged with others. This would undermine efforts to eradicate poverty around the world, risk aid becoming less effective and reduce transparency. You have a right to know how your money is being spent.

Equally, we cannot risk international aid losing its focus on the most vulnerable communities, with attention further diverted to address UK national interests. The transformational and lifesaving work of DFID must not be diluted. 

End violence against children

Our experience tells us that children pay the greatest price when conflicts erupt and disasters strike. The world is becoming a more dangerous place. 

About a quarter of the world’s children live in conflict- and crisis- affected countries, making them especially vulnerable to abuses like child marriage, dangerous work , sexual exploitation, and recruitment to armed forced and groups. World Vision UK is calling on all candidates in this General Election to commit to using UK aid to protect girls and boys around the world.

We owe it to them to uphold these promises and protect overseas aid. Children all over the world are counting on us. As complex conflicts continue, climate change takes hold, the number of displaced children rises and natural disasters become more deadly than ever before, the world faces potentially catastrophic challenges. World Vision is committed to working with the UK government to reach the most vulnerable.

As a Christian organisation, we believe in a just world where everyone can flourish. We know our supporters believe in this too – and want to see our political leaders back this up with real action. Whoever our Prime Minister is in a few weeks’ time, we want them to know this is important to the British public and must be prioritised.

Please consider asking your candidates these questions

  • I’m proud of the impact UK aid has played in the lives of the world’s most vulnerable children – what will you do to build on this impressive record? Will you commit to maintain the 0.7% commitment?
  • I want to see DFID stay as a standalone department because I know this is the best way to make sure UK aid is focussed on the world’s poorest communities. Will you commit to keeping an independent DFID?
  • I’m concerned that more one billion children across the world experience violence – what will you/​your party do to make sure UK aid plays a part in ending violence against children for every child around the globe?