Transforming Lives

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.

Elizabeth Abuk, a married mother of four, recently rallied 500 farmers in South Sudan to form a cooperative that has improved the standard of living of the entire group and their families, some 3,500 people. By joining forces and establishing the Aweil Charity Community for Development, this group of impoverished farmers obtained seeds, material to build a storeroom for their harvest, and advice from state Ministry of Agriculture extension workers. 

A new  civic education film from the Youngstars Foundation asks Nigerians the question, “Aftercount, I Vote Wetin?” (“I Voted, Now What?”). The film, released in 2012, encourages Nigerian youth to stay involved in the political process between elections.

Youngstars Foundation is a Nigerian non-profit organization of youth for youths that has reached tens of thousands of youth across Nigeria through community presentations, a popular TV program and civic education films.

The USAID Agricultural Linkages Plus Project (AgLinks Plus) and its partners are leading efforts to transform the Uzbekistan fruit tree sector. Working with Uzbek researchers, commercial nurseries and farmers, this public-private partnership that began in 2011 is helping to turn the country's fruit orchards into tranquil oases.

An Uzbek horticultural exchange program initiated by USAID brought 38 farmers, agribusiness owners and employees, nursery owners, extension agents and government officials to California for four seasonal trips timed to coincide with the Uzbek and California 2012 cropping seasons. Each trip focused on a specific theme: pruning and trellising fruit trees and grapes, best nursery practices, best cold storage practices, and grape and raisin production best practices. In summer 2013, USAID will host the first program to bring Californian horticulturalists to Uzbekistan to reconnect with alumni and visit orchards, nurseries and cold storage facilities.

Mahym Muradova successfully and happily gave birth to her second child in May 2011 in Turkmenistan's Ene Myahri Maternity Hospital.

Homeowners in rural Kazakhstan with limited savings or credit history had few options to borrow money from commercial banks for home improvement projects, including those to improve energy efficiency. But in 2012, USAID teamed up with the Asian Credit Fund to help homeowners identify and evaluate energy efficient investment opportunities and improve access to finance.

USAID is helping Central Asia to reduce greenhouse gas intensity and emissions by stimulating investments in energy efficiency technologies and programs. A key step towards efficiency in the industrial sector is creating sound energy management systems, known globally as the ISO-50001 standard, which provides public and private sector organizations with strategies to increase energy efficiency, reduce costs and improve energy performance.

“I want to become a doctor,” says Macrina Marie Sambola Pondler with a bright smile. The 17-year old is the second of four children of an unemployed couple living in the South Atlantic Autonomous Region (RAAS) in Nicaragua. There was a time when Macrina’s dream would have been impossible. At age 15, finishing sixth grade and facing reading and integration difficulties, Macrina’s mother was thinking of taking her out of school and helping her find a job so as to provide needed support for the family.

One April night, 19-year-old Ilionelle* was struggling to give birth at her home in rural northwest Haiti. After several hours, she began having seizures, a clear indication of pre-eclampsia, a severe medical disorder that can lead to the death of the mother and the baby.


Last updated: January 20, 2015