Every day, all over the world, USAID brings peace to those who endure violence, health to those who struggle with sickness, and prosperity to those who live in poverty. It is these individuals — these uncounted thousands of lives — that are the true measure of USAID’s successes and the true face of USAID's programs.
The rugged Mastung District in Pakistan’s Balochistan province is a vast desert — a sparsely populated area stretching across 6,045 square kilometers. Plagued by drought and poverty, residents subsist on farming and livestock. Wheat forms the staple of their diet, supplemented by lentils and vegetables. Chicken and eggs, when available, provide the only animal protein in local diets. Meat is a luxury reserved for special occasions or guests. “For some people, 100,000 rupees ($1660) is not a large sum. But for us, even 5 rupees is a lot,” said Qaim Khan, an elderly man from Ghausabad village in Mastung.
Welcome to the Kon Ray Ethnic Minority Boarding School, brought to Nga by USAID. The school is perched high above lush valleys in Vietnam’s picturesque Central Highlands. “This school is so clean and so nice,” says the 14-year-old from Kon Keng village, an ethnic Sora farming community that produces cassava, rice, corn, and rubber.
Patiently, Pham Thi Bich Ngoc angled her right elbow to type in what she would like to be when she grows up. Beaming, she threw a sideways glance at a teacher. The laptop screen read “doctor” in Vietnamese. The room burst out in a chorus of approval led by Ngoc’s mother, Bui Thi Mai. Daughter and mother are defiant: they will not allow cerebral palsy to dampen Ngoc’s aspirations and outlook. Through a USAID-supported education program, she is fi nding pathways to inclusion in her community.
Dang Van Toan shuffled across the floor of his garage-sized shop. Flipping a switch, he warmed up his new photocopy machine against the din of heavy pounding and drilling from the metalworker next door. For years Toan hoped he would one day have his own business. With USAID training and some seed money, he has seen his dream come true in Me, Vietnam.
A public service announcement (PSA) on tuberculosis (TB) developed by USAID enabled a young father of two to identify his disease and obtain qualified medical help.
Tursun Jonikulov, an 81-year-old farmer in Samarkand Oblast, was among the first to receive water from a newly built water distribution point. The structure, made possible by USAID, allows for easier irrigation as well as a guaranteed water supply for 824 hectares of farm land owned by 800 people.
The USAID Water Users Associations Support Program is helping farmers increase their incomes through the improved management of their water systems.
Using the knowledge and skills gained during a USAID study tour, Aynabad Muhamova opened a resource center for youth in the remote Beyik Turkmenbashy district in the Lebap province of Turkmenistan. The inspiration for the center came when, along with eight other representatives from Turkmenistan, Muhamova traveled to Raleigh, N.C., for a 3-week USAID training aimed at exposing Turkmen professionals to new ways of reaching atrisk youth and new methods for preventing drug abuse and the spread of HIV/AIDS.
Ilyas Amanov, an economics teacher with years of experience, is combining his expertise with skills learned during a U.S. study program on agricultural practices to improve agriculture in his own country, Turkmenistan.
Today Kristina Kolesnikova manages tourist programs at Ayan Tourist and Travel Company, one of the leading tour operators in Turkmenistan. The 19-year old says that she got this job because of her participation in a USAID entrepreneurship training program.
Last updated: November 22, 2013