Interaction FY16 Community Letter to the House and Senate

March 10, 2015

Dear Representative or Senator,

We, the undersigned members and partners of InterAction, write to urge you to support funding in FY 2016 for poverty-focused international development and humanitarian assistance accounts at no less than the levels outlined in the attached recommendations and our accompanying Choose to Invest FY2016.

InterAction is an alliance of more than 180 U.S.-based non-governmental and faithbased organizations working in every developing country in the world. Our members and partners act because our values, and for some our faith, call us to do the right thing: help the world’s poorest and most vulnerable citizens lift themselves out of poverty and build better lives for their families and children. Our work is enabled by the generosity of millions of Americans as well as partnerships with foundations, the private sector and the U.S. Government.

Although U.S. federal spending on foreign assistance amounts to less than 1% of the total U.S. budget, it contributes immensely to our national security, benefits our economy, and fulfills America’s deepest moral values. U.S. investments in development and humanitarian programs make the world healthier, safer, and more prosperous. These investments build sustainability by supporting critical health systems and initiatives to fight diseases and improve maternal and child health and nutrition; helping family farmers increase their productivity; allowing children to attend and learn in school; providing access to safe water and sanitation; supporting emerging democracies; fostering equitable growth; promoting gender equality; and protecting girls and boys from violence, exploitation, and trafficking.

There is still much left to do: overwhelming humanitarian needs exist across the globe in Syria, Iraq, South Sudan, Ukraine and in Ebola-affected countries. While pleased with the response to humanitarian crises in FY2015, we are concerned by the continued use of overseas contingency operations (OCO) funds to bolster humanitarian assistance. We urge Congress to incrementally move OCO humanitarian funding into the base International Development Assistance (IDA) and Migration and Refugee Assistance (MRA) accounts.

We fully understand the critical need to protect every taxpayer dollar and to ensure the U.S. Government funds effective programs that generate real and lasting results. That is why we also advocate for greater transparency and accountability. Collectively, we have made significant progress in reducing poverty, with the U.S. playing a leading role.

Strong practical and moral arguments support investing in our international development and humanitarian programs, and we urge you to provide critical funding for them in FY2016 at no less than the levels outlined in the attached recommendations. Thank you for considering our recommendations.

Please feel free to contact Marilyn Shapley at mshapley@interaction.org or 202-667-8227 for more information.

Sincerely,

1. ACDI/VOCA
2. ACTED
3. Action Against Hunger
4. ActionAid USA
5. Adeso
6. ADRA- Adventist Development and Relief Agency
7. Advocates for Youth
8. African Methodist Episcopal Church Service and
Development Agency (AME-SADA)
9. All Blessings International
10. Alliance for Global Food Security
11. Alliance for Peacebuilding
12. Alliance to End Hunger
13. American Friends Service Committee
14. American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee
15. American Jewish World Service
16. American Red Cross
17. American Refugee Committee
18. American Relief Agency for the Horn of Africa
(ARAHA)
19. Amigos de las Americas
20. Amref Health Africa in the USA
21. AMURT
22. ANERA
23. AVSI USA
24. Baptist World Aid
25. Basic Education Coalition
26. Better World Campaign
27. BRAC USA
28. Bread for the World
29. Brother's Brother Foundation
30. Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation
31. CARE USA
32. Catholics for Choice
33. CBM
34. Center for Biological Diversity
35. Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE)
36. ChildFund International
37. Children's AIDS Fund International
38. Church of the Brethren, Office of Public Witness
39. Church World Service
40. CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation
41. Climate Change Action
42. Concern America
43. Concern Worldwide (US) Inc.
44. Convoy of Hope
45. Counterpart International
46. Creative Learning
47. Direct Focus Community Aid
48. Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative
49. Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation
50. EngenderHealth
51. EPIC: Education for Peace in Iraq Center
52. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
53. EVOLVE Adoption & Family Services
54. Faiths for Safe Water
55. Family Care International
56. Feed the Children
57. Food for the Hungry
58. Franciscan Action Network
59. Friends of the Global Fight Against AIDS,
Tuberculosis and Malaria
60. Global Communities
61. Global Health Council
62. Global Links
63. Global Poverty Project
64. GlobalGiving
65. Habitat for Humanity International
66. Handicap International U.S.
67. Heartland Alliance for Human Needs & Human
Rights
68. Heifer International
69. Helen Keller International
70. HIAS
71. IMA World Health
72. Imagine No Malaria Campaign, The United
Methodist Church
73. InsideNGO
74. Institute for Sustainable Communities
75. Institute for Youth Development
76. InterAction
77. International Center for Not-for-Profit Law
78. International Center for Research on Women
(ICRW)
79. International Housing Coalition
80. International Medical Corps
81. International Orthodox Christian Charities

82. International Relief Teams
83. International Rescue Committee
84. International Youth Foundation
85. Internews
86. Intrahealth International
87. Islamic Relief USA
88. John Snow, Inc. (JSI)
89. Joint Council on International Children's Services
90. Leadership Conference of Women Religious
91. Life for Relief and Development
92. Lutheran World Relief
93. MAFRAD
94. Management Sciences for Health
95. Map international
96. Medical Care Development, Inc.
97. Mennonite Central Committee
98. Mercy Corps
99. Mercy-USA for Aid and Development
100. Millennium Water Alliance
101. National Association of Social Workers
102. National Council of Churches
103. NCBA CLUSA
104. Nothing But Nets
105. One Acre Fund
106. Operation USA
107. Oxfam America
108. PAI
109. PATH
110. Pathfinder International
111. Pax Christi USA
112. PCI
113. Perkins International
114. Physicians for Peace
115. Plan International USA
116. Planet Aid
117. Planned Parenthood Federation of America
118. Plant With Purpose
119. Population Council
120. Population Institute
121. Population Media Center
122. Presbyterian Church (USA)
123. Project C.U.R.E.
124. Promotora de Servicios para el Desarrollo S.C.
125. Refugees International
126. Relief International
127. RESULTS
128. ReSurge International
129. Save the Children
130. Self Help Africa
131. Seva Foundation
132. Shot@Life
133. Sierra Club
134. SNV USA
135. Solidarity Center
136. SOS Children's Villages - USA, Inc.
137. SPOON Foundation
138. Syrian American Medical Society Foundation
139. The Borgen Project
140. The Episcopal Church
141. The Evangelical Environmental Network
142. The Hunger Project
143. The Salvation Army USA
144. Transparency International - USA
145. Trickle Up
146. U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants
147. U.S. Fund for UNICEF
148. United Church of Christ, Justice and Witness
Ministries
149. United Methodist Church, General Board of
Church and Society
150. United Methodist Committee on Relief
151. United Nations Association of America
152. Universal Access Project
153. US National Committee for UN Women
154. Volunteers for Economic Growth Alliance (VEGA)
155. WASH Advocates
156. Water For People
157. Water for South Sudan
158. WaterAid
159. Waterlines
160. WellShare International
161. Wide Horizons For Children
162. Women Thrive Worldwide
163. Women's Refugee Commission
164. World Connect
165. World Food Program USA
166. World Learning
167. World Vision
168. Zakat Foundation of America