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.

Munyinga province in northern Burundi has a population of about 700,000, yet no hospital in the area had a neonatology unit until recently. Premature newborns were transported by ambulance to the regional hospital of Ngozi, 80 kilometers away—putting fragile, premature babies at risk. As a result, many preemies died.

Miloš Grujić, a civil engineering student from Kosovo's Zupče/Zupçë village in the town of Zubin Potok, first discovered the shiitake mushroom while surfing the Internet in search of a viable business idea. An entrepreneurial young man in a country with high unemployment, Grujić did not want to wait for a job to find him. After researching what it would take to cultivate the mushrooms, he developed a business plan and approached USAID’s Community Action Initiative Program for help to purchase his startup materials.

Access to clean water is one of the most basic human needs. Without a proper water drainage system in place, wastewater can wreak havoc on communities large and small, carrying disease and damaging property. For a small village in northern Kosovo, a damaged water drainage channel had devastating effects on the health and livelihood of the community.

For many people in rural areas of Ethiopia access to sufficient water and adequate sanitation remains out of reach. Pastoralist communities in Ethiopia have some of the lowest water and sanitation coverage rates in the world, a situation exacerbated by climate change and population growth.

USAID interventions in areas of chronic and emergency water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) needs and subsequent development investments in sustainable access to safe water represent a success in moving families from relief to development programming.

Uji është një nga nevojat më elementare të njeriut. Kanalet e drenazhimit të ujit në mjediset rurale, edhe ato më të voglat, nëse nuk menaxhohen siç duhet mund të shkaktojnë shumë probleme. Për një fshat të vogël në veri të Kosovës, një kanal i dëmtuar i drenazhimit të ujit, paraqet kërcënime për shëndetin e njerëzve, sidomos për shëndetin e  grupeve të cenueshme siç janë fëmijët.

Pristup čistoj vodi je jedna od osnovnih ljudskih potreba. Bez odgovorajućeg sistema za odvod vode, poplavne i otpadne vode mogu da izazovu haos kako u velikim, tako i u malim zajednicama, uzrokujući pojavu bolesti i propadanje imovine.  Oštećen kanal za odvod atmosferskih voda imao je razarajuće posledice po zdravlje i život zajednice jednog malog sela na severu Kosova.

Kërpudhat shiitake janë përdorur për mjekime herbale nga kinezët për shumë shekuj. Kjo kërpudhë nga Azia Lindore është pëdorur në trajtimin e qarkullimit të gjakut  dhe sëmundjeve respiratore por edhe probloemet me plakjen e hershme. Karakteristikat e saj promovuese dhe shija e pasur e bëri këtë delikatesë  kërpudhën e dytë e ngrënëshme e cila më së shumti kultivohet në botë.

In Rwanda, approximately 44 percent of children are stunted due to malnutrition. While Rwandan families are encouraged to prevent malnutrition, most rural communities lack the ingredients and knowledge to prepare a balanced diet. In most cases, they grapple with lack of other basic needs and end up giving little attention to the quality of food they eat. 

Agnes Mukaloni, a pyrethrum (commonly known as chrysanthemum) farmer, says she never thought it would be possible to grow crops on land she called her own, but this season, she will do just that. 

Mukaloni leads a women’s group of 30 pyrethrum farmers who organized to pool percentages of their incomes into a savings account, which they used in the latter months of 2013 to rent a plot of farmland for one year. The group was able to earn about $200 (120,000 Rwandan francs) in four months.

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Last updated: August 11, 2016