UN Road Safety Fund plans $4 million grant round for ‘immediate impact’

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UNECE Executive Secretary Olga Algayerova and UN Special Envoy Jean Todt both stressed the urgent need for action. (All photos courtesy of UNECE.)
UNECE Executive Secretary Olga Algayerova and UN Special Envoy Jean Todt both stressed the urgent need for action. (All photos courtesy of UNECE.)
FIA Foundation chairman Lord Robertson urged a partnership approach.
FIA Foundation chairman Lord Robertson urged a partnership approach.
Nhan Tran, WHO Injury Coordinator, makes a point in the strategy discussion.
Nhan Tran, WHO Injury Coordinator, makes a point in the strategy discussion.
The Advisory Board includes UN agencies, donors, governments and NGOs.
The Advisory Board includes UN agencies, donors, governments and NGOs.

The UN Road Safety Fund’s Advisory Board has approved plans to launch its first formal Call for Proposals for road traffic injury interventions with ‘immediate and tangible impact’.

Meeting at UN headquarters in Geneva on 3rd September the Fund’s board – including the FIA Foundation – agreed that the Fund will disburse US $4 million to finance selected projects aimed at contributing to reduce global road traffic fatalities, giving priority to individual country and multi-country projects having immediate and tangible impact.

The call is expected to officially open in early October 2019, when details on funding parameters and application process will be published on the Fund’s web page.

Project proposals shall be submitted through one of the ten Fund participating UN organisations, and will be assessed in line with the Fund's Global Framework Plan of Action for Road Safety and Funding Criteria and Priorities.

The Advisory Board meeting also reviewed the organisation’s business plan, messaging, and fundraising objectives.

Launched in March 2018, the UN Road Safety Fund has built up an initial donor base with countries including France and Russia; the European Commission; and private sector companies including Michelin, Total and Pirelli. The FIA Foundation has pledged $10 million, of which it has already committed $3 million. However, participants agreed that there needs to be a serious and focused fundraising campaign to realise the potential of the Fund. Opening the meeting, Jean Todt, the UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Road Safety, reminded board members of the urgency of the cause, and encouraged renewed effort to secure additional pledges. He highlighted the forthcoming Global Ministerial Conference in Sweden, in February 2020, as an important opportunity to promote the Fund and build momentum.

The FIA Foundation’s chairman, Lord Robertson of Port Ellen, emphasised the need for partnership. He urged close collaboration with the World Bank’s Global Road Safety Facility, and regular dialogue by the UN Road Safety Fund with philanthropies active in the field, and with other global funds active in other areas of health and the environment, to identify opportunities for co-funding and shared initiatives.

The Advisory Board also reviewed progress in the implementation of the five pilot projects approved by the Fund’s Steering Committee in November 2018. Worth nearly US $1 million and implemented in Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Paraguay, Philippines, Senegal and South Africa, the pilot projects focus on improving the collection of road traffic fatality data, strengthening speed management, enhancing legal frameworks for road safety, scaling up safe street designs, and developing capacity in child-responsive urban planning and sustainable urban transportation.