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.

The call for local government executives to keep a high level of integrity was never more apparent among peers than during local school board workshops conducted in the Philippines in November 2013 under a USAID project.

July 2014—Jessie Lebanan, Elizabeth Entienza, and Emerlita Balasbas are clearing a path for Filipino micro-entrepreneurs and cooperatives to better manage their money and receive loan proceeds through a new, unconventional method.

With high transportation costs and long travel times, many Filipinos lack access to financial services. As a result, they miss opportunities to manage and grow their money. So USAID has engaged local governments, businesses and financial institutions to deliver banking services via the one tool that nearly all Filipinos possess—their mobile phones.

July 2014—Maylene Reyes, 21, is a mother and full-time micro-entrepreneur. She lives in the rural town of Benito Soliven in the Philippines’ Isabela province. She runs a sari-sari store—a convenience store that sells a variety of goods that serve the daily needs of her community. Sari-sari stores are typically operated inside the storeowner’s home and are found in most neighborhoods in the Philippines. In the afternoon, Reyes travels around her village selling banana que, a Filipino snack made of fried bananas coated in caramelized sugar. 

July 2014—Rather than pursue a risky migration abroad, or simply become resigned to a life of extreme poverty, landless youth in a chronically food insecure district in Ethiopia are staying in their families’ villages, while also earning an income. How?

These young men and women in the Dodota district are participating in the Government of Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Program, a USAID-supported project to restore their local watershed and rejuvenate degraded land. It is also dramatically changing their lives.

“We never went hungry during the time we received assistance.” Such a simple statement from Bellah Mabhungo, 57, from Mabhungo village in Zimbabwe said it all. For her and others in the village, the hunger season had come a little earlier than expected in 2013.

Eleven-year-old Maftuna Ismoilova and her 6-year-old brother Shukrullo live in the remote village of Dustov, in Khatlon province, Tajikistan. Like most children in Dustov, Maftuna and Shukrullo had no access to books for young children, not even at the school library, until the arrival of 433 books in 2013.

July 2014—Tajikistan, one of Central Asia’s poorest countries, is burdened with high rates of tuberculosis (TB). Limited funding for TB and extremely low infection control in hospitals have prompted the National TB Program to introduce cost-effective measures to shift more patients from hospital-based care to outpatient care, as recommended by the World Health Organization. Critical to this transition is ensuring adherence to treatment regimens and providing social and psychological support for patients.  

July 2014—Access to finance can open up a world of opportunity for rural farmers. As part of Feed the Future, the U.S. Government’s global hunger and food security initiative, USAID's Productive Agriculture Project works to strengthen Tajikistan’s agricultural sector to benefit small farm owners, their families and their communities. Helping farmers to obtain loans is one way the program empowers farmers.

In an effort to help reduce its contribution to climate change resulting from greenhouse gas buildup, Kazakhstan launched a greenhouse gas emissions trading program last year, which requires high-emitting businesses to reduce their emissions each year. However, many companies do not yet have the tools to comply with the requirements and the know-how to reduce their emissions footprint over time.


Last updated: May 21, 2015