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.

COMBASE (the Bolivian Evangelical Commission) is a faith-based organization that provides health services to the low income population in the city of Cochabamba, 250 miles east of the capital, La Paz. USAID has supported the organization’s reproductive health program since 1991. COMBASE’s small hospital and five clinics offer maternal and child health services to approximately 65,000 people every year. For many, this institution is one of the few affordable medical facilities within their neighborhoods. An internal evaluation showed that the organization was in a difficult financial situation and lacked the systems needed to effectively evaluate its services, costs and sustainability prospects.

Bolivia has a high maternal mortality rate and an elevated incidence of sexually transmitted diseases. Only a decade ago, topics such as family planning, reproductive health and HIV were taboo there. The citizens’ knowledge and understanding of disease transmission, consequences and cure were deficient, and in many cases inaccurate. Yet, no services were available to provide information.

A group of USAID-trained teachers from Macedonia won the European Grand Prix, part of Microsoft Corp.'s Innovative Education Forum held March 21-25, 2011, in Moscow. For the winning project, Grandma's Games, teachers from five schools collaborated to introduce today's youth to forgotten games their grandparents played.

To ensure that teachers incorporate new skills into their practice, USAID/Macedonia developed an innovative certification process for its teacher training programs. These programs no longer provide certificates for simply attending training. Instead, through a professional portfolio, teachers must first provide evidence that they are using the newly acquired skills and knowledge in their classrooms.

The Macedonian Bureau for Development of Education is a target organization of a USAID program aimed at human and institutional development. The USAID program determined that the BDE needed serious IT infrastructure improvement to best serve Macedonian students and the development of the graduation exam web portal was one of the priority projects.

Kosovo is the youngest European nation; it also has Europe's highest percentage of young. Approximately 60 percent of the population is under 27. These facts pose a stability challenge, and are worsened by an unemployment rate of approximately 75 percent.

In the medium term, having the youngest labor force in Europe could work to Kosovo's advantage, but that potential will be fruitless if a "lost generation" do not obtain competitive skills, or if they lose them due to unemployment and disillusionment.

As women join the workforce in Kosovo, there is an increasing need for quality daycare. BAMBI, which opened in April 2010, is the first privately-owned daycare center in Kosovo’s Gllogovc/Gllogovac municipality, which has a population of 74,000.

A USAID program in Kosovo helped make afterschool English and computer classes possible for more than 1,000 students in 13 schools nationwide.

For three years, high school students in Kosovo benefited from access to computers, internet, and the English language through USAID’s “Community Service through Extracurricular Activities” initiative.

The project installed computer labs at fourteen locations around the country. The labs were used for extracurricular computer and English classes, which were taught by university students using tailored curricula.

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Last updated: January 12, 2015