USAID Builds Partnerships with Religious Leaders and Faith-Based Organizations to Reduce Hunger and Poverty

For Immediate Release

Thursday, January 6, 2011
USAID Press Office

WASHINGTON, DC - On January 4, 2011, the Administrator for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), Dr. Rajiv Shah reached out to faith-based and nongovernmental organizations during the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships event, co-hosted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and USAID, to convey the importance of partnership on reducing hunger and poverty. The event gathered more than 30 religious leaders and representatives of faith-based organizations from across the country for a consultation to share their experience and knowledge in food and agriculture programs. At the event, Dr. Shah discussed how the faith-based community can engage in President Obama's global hunger and food security initiative, Feed the Future.

"In a truly collaborative event, I was honored to witness an exhilarating moment in the progress of the President's Feed the Future initiative. I am truly enthusiastic about the opportunities enabled by these commitments and the potential benefit for the world's hungry people. We know that it is only through the collaboration of all sectors that we can succeed in our global commitment to food security," said Dr. Shah.

Specifically, Dr. Shah announced a $10-million Innovation Grant for Economic Resilience and Risk Reduction to encourage the development of new methods and approaches to reach the most vulnerable. Applications will be accepted initially from those working in Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali and Bangladesh.

As part of the USAID FORWARD reform agenda, Dr. Shah also committed USAID to provide opportunities for NGOs to compete for grants or cooperative agreements in the Feed the Future potential focus countries. He said, "We will not be successful in accelerating impacts for the most vulnerable if we rely exclusively on contract instruments." Dr. Shah also assured the NGO and faith-based community that USAID missions leading Feed the Future programs will host consultations to make sure aid organizations are moving together cooperatively to combat hunger and poverty.

He also discussed the Africa Leadership Training and Capacity Building Program, which is currently working in 14 African countries to support training of Africans in institutional leadership. NGOs were invited to connect with the leadership team implementing this program to contribute to its success. Feed the Future is working to improve agricultural productivity, promote market development, facilitate trade expansion, invest in global innovation and research, promote equitable rural economic growth, and address child malnutrition.

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Last updated: October 18, 2017

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