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.

While HIV prevalence in Afghanistan is currently low with 1,250 reported cases to date, the country is at high risk for the spread of HIV due to factors such as low literacy rates, low awareness of HIV, war, poverty, and growing injecting drug use.

When asked what services the municipality should provide in the city, the residents of Qalat pointed to garbage removal as one of their top priorities. In close collaboration with the Qalat mayor, USAID responded to this request through a project designed to strengthen the municipal capacity in the six southern provincial capitals. From June to September 2011, residential and market areas, pathways, and ditches were cleared of trash and swept clean. This project improved the hygiene and appeal of central city areas and simultaneously improved relationships between the citizens and their municipal representatives.

Motivated. Dedicated. Determined to make a difference in the government of Afghanistan. These are just a few words that describe Amina Ahmady, a former intern with the USAID-funded Women in Government internship program. Ahmady’s journey from intern to full-time employee with the Government of Afghanistan is inspirational to other Afghan women seeking to follow her lead.

Women across Afghanistan are beginning to prove their significance at home and within the community thanks to the opportunities for economic generation and enhanced participation provided by the international community and many Afghan civil-society organizations.

Insurgents, whose attitude toward education is often at odds with that of the local community, target schools to destabilize communities and demonstrate the government’s inability to provide a safety for its children.
As a result of funding limitations, the Gharati Village Middle School in Adraskan District, located 95 km from the provincial center of Hirat Province, did not have a surrounding wall. The 3,800 students and 60 teachers at the school were at risk of being kidnapped or intimidated by insurgents because of the open space in front of the school.

Across Afghanistan, many health professionals like Dr. Sayed Zia Ul Rahman, a health officer in Worsaj District, talk about the positive results in the achievement of standardized, high-quality healthcare and share their experiences with colleagues. Since 2006, USAID has partnered with the Ministry of Public Health and non-governmental organizations to implement the Quality Assurance (QA) process, a practical and streamlined management approach for improving the performance and quality of health services.

When Sairah, a 38-year-old Afghan housewife, heard that short-term jobs for women were opening in her city, her first thought was where to sign up. “They said it would be difficult work, but I didn’t care. I’m used to heavy burdens,” said Sairah.

For decades, poor irrigation, annual flooding, and severe drought plagued Nimroz Province’s Chakhansor District, depleting its agricultural capacity. The Khashrod River provides the lion’s share of the district’s limited water resources. These waters, however, often caused more harm than good, regularly flooding surrounding villages suffering from inadequate irrigation infrastructure.

The Ferosgha-e-Afghan shopping center is a five story building located in Kabul City. It was substantially damaged when three Taliban units attacked government buildings in the capital city in January 2010, which officials say killed at least 27 people and injured more than 50.

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Last updated: December 31, 2014