For Immediate Release
On Friday, May 24, 2013 USAID Mission Director Stephen M. Haykin joined David Darakhvelidze, Minister of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Accommodation and Refugees to sign memorandum of understanding (MOU) on cooperation under USAID’s New Economic Opportunities (NEO) Initiative. The MOU outlines the development of Homeowners’ (HOA) and Tenants’ (TA) associations to support sustainable IDP housing in US Government rehabilitated IDP buildings and cottage settlements. During the meeting, NEO also presented the HOA Guidebook designed to assist both homeowners and municipal government officials in establishing, managing and overseeing HOAs.
NEO, through its IDP Housing Component, is working to enable IDP communities to sustainably maintain their house, which have been or will be rehabilitated through support from the U.S. Government. Before the rehabilitation of the buildings is completed in 2013, NEO successfully piloted the development of associations in seven IDP apartment buildings in Rustavi, Kutaisi and Senaki and two IDP settlements in Berbuki and Khurvaleti, benefiting 429 IDP households. Using the resources developed for the pilot program, NEO is currently extending activities into additional 9 IDP settlements and 28 IDP buildings across Georgia.
To strengthen the initiative, NEO developed a HOA Establishment and Management Guidebook, designed to provide step-by-step guidance to homeowners to establish and manage HOAs in their buildings. The Guidebook also will serve as a useful reference tool for municipal government officials responsible for overseeing and encouraging residents to establish HOAs within their municipalities.
The NEO program is funded by the Amercian people through USAID to help people in municipalities and communities across Georgia access economic markets, attract investment, and identify and implement economically useful infrastructure projects. Over the life of the project, NEO will benefit at least 70,000 rural and vulnerable households in the municipalities of Dusheti, Kazbegi, Kareli, Gori, Khashuri, Oni, Tsageri, Lentekhi, Zugdidi, and Tsalenjikha through development of community-level economic plans; implementation of small-scale infrastructure projects; and access to agricultural, vocational and on-the-job training activities. The project will result in sustainable poverty reduction, improved living standards for vulnerable populations, including IDPs, and increased local government participation in addressing community needs.
Last updated: November 19, 2013