Deputy Administrator Paloma Adams-Allen at the Work with USAID Briefing

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Remarks

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, April 6, 2022
Office of Press Relations
press@usaid.gov

Virtual

DEPUTY ADMINISTRATOR ADAMS-ALLEN: I’d like to thank you all for joining us today, especially those who may have just learned about USAID or have yet to partner with us.

For 60 years, USAID has collaborated with U.S. and international organizations from across the public and private sectors, NGOs, civil society, and local actors, seeking their expertise and engaging their networks to drive development progress in more than 100 countries around the world – as you heard Gabi say.

Within USAID’s ranks, we have agricultural, health, climate, and food scientists whose efforts save lives and improve livelihoods in the countries where we work. We have experts in engineering, economics, energy, trade, and innovation who help expand opportunity and build prosperity globally. And we have diplomats, scholars, advocates, and human rights defenders who protect and promote the democratic principles that we hold dear.

Since its founding, USAID has been an incredible force for good around the world, delivering life-saving humanitarian assistance; strengthening democratic institutions and civil society; and expanding access to vital medications, vaccinations and treatments, while bolstering public health systems. And our partners, large and small, have been crucial to our positive impact over six decades. 

For example, our partnerships with small businesses provide our Agency with outside expertise as they cultivate creative solutions to address some of the world’s most sensitive issues.  

In Kenya, we are collaborating with Linc––a U.S-based small business. As part of a collective that includes Kenyan and global organizations, Linc is engaging various stakeholders and spearheading collective action efforts aimed at two large Kenyan companies to improve labor rights for people with disabilities, and women in particular.

We also partner with a number of American nonprofits that bring a sense of innovation and ingenuity, and possess values directly aligned with our mission. 

For instance, since 2010, we have partnered with a Rhode Island-based organization called Edesia that produces high-nutrient, ready-to-use foods that are distributed to children during humanitarian crises around the world. Over the last 12 years, our collaboration with them has helped provide healthy foods to some 16 million children in 60 countries. Not only do they have a massive impact in the fight against hunger, but Edesia recruits staff that is representative of the people they serve. 

And our faith based partners function as gateways into communities everywhere. In Tanzania, local faith leaders are addressing the source of COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy in their communities, and faith based organizations across denominations are distributing information toolkits that have significantly increased the uptake in vaccinations. 

While we are proud of our accomplishments across six decades, we also recognize that we, and the countries and communities we serve, would benefit from having a larger number of partners and the new ideas, fresh perspectives, and expertise they bring. 

One of the ways we’re addressing this issue is through our commitment to becoming the agency for truly inclusive development. 

For us, inclusive development means partnering with organizations of all shapes and sizes and making good on our commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility, both within our walls and throughout our programming.

So we are ramping up our engagement with organizations from different backgrounds and bringing more voices to the table to cement a diverse coalition of partners––like all of you.

We recognize that engagement is just the first step, however. We also have to address the aspects of our bureaucracy that are barriers to organizations seeking to work with us. Over the past year, we have taken steps to help organizations new to USAID navigate our partnership process. 

One of these steps has been the launch of our WorkWithUSAID.org website – which is a one-stop shop that walks organizations through the process of partnering with USAID. It includes online courses that assist in bidding for awards and other resources like connecting prospective partners with existing partners. 

The website opens more doors for collaboration with organizations like yours, and we are excited to continue to remove obstacles that get in the way of close partnership with USAID. 

We have found that whether we are working with a small business, a non-profit, a faith based organization, or any other group represented here, you offer unique skill sets and bring different perspectives that allow us to better serve the communities where we work.

I hope you will consider partnering with us in the future. If you are interested in what we do, please participate in our Q&A session, and go to WorkWithUSAID.org to explore how you can get involved. 

As USAID strives to become the agency for inclusive development, we hope to find partners that reflect America’s great diversity, and seek to gain greater perspectives and innovations that will make the world more peaceful and prosperous for all.

Thank you for joining us today. We hope to hear from you soon and welcome you to the extended USAID family.

Last updated: April 06, 2022

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