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Government minister Alan Duncan visits Craven
9:20am Saturday 21st July 2012 in News
International Development Minister Alan Duncan has visited Craven.
He accepted an invitation to visit the area from his Parliamentary Private Secretary Julian Smith, who is also MP for Skipton and Ripon.
Mr Smith wanted to show the minister what work was being done locally to promote international development.
He hosted a summit at Glusburn Community Primary School, which was attended by representatives of Lothersdale Primary School, Skipton Girls’ High School, South Craven School, Oxfam, Water Aid and the OurSpace project.
Later, Mr Duncan visited Skipton Building Society to hear about its work as Craven’s biggest employer and the Broughton Hall Business Park to see its efforts to promote growth and enterprise by supporting businesses. Mr Duncan said: “It was a pleasure to be able to accept Julian’s invitation to visit Skipton, hear about the work being done on international development and witness the drive of local businesses to create growth.
“The discussion focused on the importance of the work the Government is doing to develop greater understanding about people less fortunate than us around the world was encouraging and it was really positive to see so much commitment from people young and old in Craven to international development.”
Mr Smith said Craven should be proud of its links with other countries, which allowed greater knowledge of the challenges being faced by children and adults far afield.
“I know the minister was impressed by the efforts being made here which show why the Government’s commitment to international aid and development is so important,” he said.
The meeting was organised with Liz Roodhouse, the co-ordinator of the Craven Development Education Centre. She said: “The minister coming to Craven provided the impetus to bring people together with different life histories but with a common purpose and for the young people especially it was hugely inspiring to hear about such a variety of projects that are going on.
“Seeing the big picture is important and the minister certainly enabled us to do that. Everyone went away feeling proud that our government has ring fenced UK Aid and remains totally committed to ensuring that 0.7 per cent of GDP is made available to promote international development and alleviate extreme poverty in the poorest parts of the world.
“We were pleased too to hear about the rigorous evaluation procedures in place to ensure that UK Aid money is spent effectively.”