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.

Marina Modebadze, chair of the non-governmental organization Society of Women Democrats, has long been concerned about the lack of women’s involvement in Samtskhe-Javakheti region’s politics and society. She felt that women in the region were often not aware of their civil rights and responsibilities. Through her involvement with a USAID study tour on non-governmental organization development, Modebadze is now at the forefront of providing the region’s women with information about their role in society.

Small-scale farmers in Georgia face numerous challenges. Deficient production practices and technologies combined with lack of access to agricultural credit are among the shortcomings hindering the development of the country’s fresh herbs industry.

For four teachers at Public School 17 in Kutaisi, Georgia, teaching high school students is more than a job. It is a commitment to helping their young students make safe and healty choices on their path to adulthood.

For three hours every day, Nato Kuprava, Irina Burjaliani, Tea Kutateladze and Eka Murusidze stay after school on a volunteer basis to teach their students about reproductive health, sexually transmitted diseases, drug and alcohol abuse and other social issues such as early marriage.

More than 1.5 million newly insured Georgians are now able to better navigate the complex world of health insurance thanks to a USAID-initiated Health Insurance Mediation Service (HIMS). The new service is part of the Government of Georgia’s Ministry of Labor Health and Social Affairs (MOLHSA) and serves Georgians by resolving disputes and strengthening interactions between vulnerable individuals, insurers, and health care providers.

A few days later, as the zarangs and trucks came to Gul Jan’s neighborhood to collect piles of trash, she called the municipal team to express her appreciation for being heard. She stated, “If only a few women in my neighborhood feel responsible and do their part, this entire neighborhood will be clean. Thanks to Mazar Municipality, I feel involved in decision making. I called, and I was listened to. I had heard about this project, and I told the women in my neighborhood not to throw trash on the street. I told them zarangs from the Municipality will come and collect your trash.” Gul Jan has become an advocate of the program and a supporter of the Municipality.

Махадали Хурамов, сдавая в аренду 2 га земли в районе Рудаки в Таджикистане, боролся в течение многих лет, чтобы получить воду для полива своих полей. 

In Georgia, one significant constraint on local governance has been the lack of local ownership of structures used on a daily basis, such as city hall buildings, park equipment, or municipal water and sewage systems. The central government, which owned these assets, simply permitted use by localities. As a result, Georgia’s second largest city, Kutaisi, did not have the legal ability or incentive to effectively manage its most valuable assets on behalf of its citizens

With a population of 50,000, Kaspi, like most other Georgian municipalities, is burdened by neglected infrastructure. The city, in the Shida Kartli region, is now struggling to provide basic municipal services such as parks, street lighting, and garbage collection to its citizens. One important obstacle to improving services was the low collection rate of municipal fees. As a consequence of the poor quality service due to the low collection rates, residents were illegally dumping waste on the outside of town along the Lekhura River banks.

Tariel Chanturia, one of Georgia’s most renowned poets, faced an unexpected obstacle to publishing his newest poems. David Gotsiridze, director of the printing house Kedeli, explained that Chanturia would have to first register as an individual entrepreneur before publishing his new volume.

Despite Gotsiridze’s assurance that the process would be fast and simple, Chanturia expected the worst – confusing procedures, long lines, multiple visits, and unofficial payments.

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Last updated: January 12, 2015