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Developing agribusinesses creates equitable growth and opportunity
Reverie Zurba/USAID

Bilateral Program Overview

Health Program

A five-year Partnership Framework agreement was signed between the South Africa and the U.S in 2010, providing a path for the transition of the PEPFAR program from emergency assistance to sustainable activities. PEPFAR is shifting from its initial emergency focus to a heightened emphasis on sustainability, with a core emphasis on HIV prevention over the next five years.  USAID is expanding investments into high-impact prevention interventions, such as prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) and medical male circumcision (MMC). The program is working to identify, implement, and evaluate promising and innovative prevention methods, to expand PEPFAR's existing toolkit of interventions, and to advance the science around HIV prevention.  USAID also builds management and technical capacity to address the epidemic, working with the public and private sectors, nongovernmental organizations, and faith-based partners to train and support facility-based and community-based workers who are helping people with HIV/AIDS.

With support from USAID, the South African Government has provided tuberculosis treatment to more than 100,000 people co-infected with HIV to date. USAID also works with South Africa’s Department of Social Development and nongovernmental organizations to provide care for 486,355 orphans and vulnerable children.

Economic Growth Office

South Africa is the economic and political leader of Sub-Saharan Africa but suffers from income inequality, poverty, unemployment, and a lack of relevant job skills among historically disadvantaged populations. The US aims to assist South Africa to achieve sustainable broad-based economic growth, as well as to strengthen regional economic linkages. Toward this goal and in tandem with the South African Government (SAG), USAID programs in South Africa support improving the business enabling environment for black-owned small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and increasing access to finance for SMEs. To bolster South Africa’s regional development impact, USAID assistance aids South Africa’s transition to a lower-emissions development pathway, mitigates the impacts of climate change, and leverages South African expertise to address food security challenges in the region. 

Regional General Development Office

Gender Based Violence: South Africa suffers from high rates of gender-based violence which end up as a significant portion of cases brought before the non-specialized courts. In response, USAID programs help increase access to justice and integrated support services (medical, legal, and psychosocial counseling) for survivors of sexual assault through expansion of the Government of South Africa’s (GoSA) Thuthuzela Care Center (TCC) network while also focusing on raising awareness amonst South Africa’s citizenry about TCC services and prevention of gender based violence more broadly. 

Environment: USAID/South Africa supports climate-friendly, sustainable economic development within the region. South Africa, as both a significant contributor to and potential victim of climate change, has undertaken significant efforts to develop a more climate resilient, lower emissions, job-creating economy. With its unique role in the region and the potential to serve as a model for other countries, the U.S. government has recently partnered with South Africa to accelerate their transition and support their development of a Low Emissions Development Strategy

Education: The School Capacity & Innovation Program (SCIP) is designed to improve primary grade reading outcomes by building teacher effectiveness and strengthening classroom and school management.  SCIP supports local South African models or interventions that work directly with teachers and school management teams in innovative ways in order to improve their practice as instructional leaders and managers.  SCIP is aligned to the USAID education strategy, which supports interventions to improve learning outcomes with a focus on primary grade reading as a measure of performance.  Selected models receive funding to expand, refine and rigorously test their interventions, in preparation for broad scale-up at the district, provincial or national level.  In addition to seeking initiatives that demonstrate innovation, impact and a vision for growth, SCIP encourages entities that demonstrate partnerships with like-minded organizations and/or school districts and provincial departments of education.

Trilateral Assistance: the Trilateral Assistance Program (TAP) allows USAID to support various small-scale development projects on the continent implemented by South African departments and agencies. Through these programs, the Government of South Africa provides technical assistance to other countries in Africa to promote peace, democracy and development. USAID is maximizing its development resources across the continent by supporting the GoSA to further our development priorities. This partnership is important politically to the USG in terms of cementing a sound relationship with South Africa given their significant influence in the African Union, the Southern African Development Community and the United Nations Security Council. The program provides a platform for the GoSA to enhance its capacity to promote and strengthen democratic norms, rule of law, good governance and human rights on the continent.


South Africa, India, and Brazil are three U.S.-Strategic Partners to advance food security in the world. Through the U.S. Government’s Feed the Future (FTF) initiative, USAID is leveraging South Africa’s public and private sector, universities and other institution’s technical expertise and training capacity to enhance food security across the African continent. USAID is engaging South Africa’s Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) to build capacity and support their efforts to assist countries in the region to enhance their food security.

Last updated: February 01, 2016

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