USAID believes that the purpose of foreign aid is to end the need for its existence. With a staff of over 100 professionals managing investments of over $300 million annually, USAID is committed to working with Zambia on its specific development journey.
USAID/Zambia’s 2019–2024 Country Development Cooperation Strategy aims to advance Zambia’s journey to self-reliance and make progress toward the ultimate objective of ending Zambia’s need for development assistance. USAID will partner with the Zambian government, civil society and private sector to advance the country’s self-reliance through more effective development choices and governance, enterprise-driven economic growth, and increased resilience among its vulnerable citizens. USAID assistance in Zambia focuses on: (1) effective, citizen-responsive governance; (2) rural poverty reduction and sustainable natural resource management; (3) utilization of quality health, water and sanitation, and social protection services; and (4) primary education quality.
Agriculture and Food Security
In line with the U.S. Government’s Feed the Future Initiative, our program works to: improve agricultural production and markets, and develop new opportunities for security and prosperity; strengthen the resilience of communities to shocks that can lead to famine and political unrest; and, reduce hunger and improve nutrition, especially among mothers and children. Our projects utilize a market-driven approach to attract investment and build local capacity within the agribusiness sector. USAID focuses on improving the business enabling environment through policy improvements, and strengthening rural agricultural enterprises to increase jobs, incomes and profits through a holistic value chain approach.
Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance
Zambia’s political settlement is increasingly vulnerable, limiting political and economic power to elites and reflecting underlying societal, economic, and political discord which is further disrupted by a high public debt burden. Within these fissures, there are important opportunities for previously unlikely democratic governance and fiscal reforms. We partner with the government and people of Zambia to build and sustain a democratic, well-governed, and accountable state that can respond to the needs of its growing population, and achieve economic development while protecting the fundamental rights and freedoms of all citizens. We support Zambia’s democratic traditions and promote social and political stability by strengthening citizen participation and sub-national governance structures; advancing respect for human rights; promoting free and fair elections; and improving accountability, efficiency, and transparency in public financial and domestic revenue generation systems.
An educated Zambian citizenry results in a healthy, economically productive, civically engaged, and self-reliant Zambia. Specifically, reading is the single-most critical foundational skill that determines all future learning. Despite incremental gains in learning achievement, education assessments demonstrate that approximately only 10 percent of children are able to read at grade level by the end of Grade 2. We partner to integrate sustainable improvements that strengthen Zambia’s education system to deliver quality primary education. Education programs support national-level reforms related to implementation of the primary literacy curriculum, development of teaching and learning materials for pre-primary school through Grade 3, pre-service teacher education, and national literacy assessments. Education programs also support focused efforts to strengthen literacy instruction and learner outcomes for pre-primary through Grade 3, and remedial instruction up to Grade 5. Learning achievement among targeted beneficiaries serves as the ultimate measure of system performance.
With over 40 percent of Southern Africa’s fresh water, an abundance of surplus arable land, and approximately 50 million hectares of intact forest, Zambia possesses a vital source of ecosystem services and a valuable resource base for the country and the region. Unfortunately, continued economic hardships and growing income inequality forces rural communities to degrade their natural resources just to survive. USAID recognizes this challenging situation for those communities and works to provide them with sustainable, alternative livelihoods, working alongside our private sector partners to create jobs and reduce demand for illicit goods, such as charcoal and bushmeat. Continuing our partnership with the Zambian government, USAID is building local capacity to manage their resources, protect those assets and place communities in the driver’s seat of managing the forests and wildlife that they are so intimately tied to.
By improving health outcomes and meeting critical needs of vulnerable populations, which includes rural women, children and key populations, USAID programs aim to improve morbidity and mortality rates across the population and strengthenZambia’s health system. We strengthen the public health system at the national, provincial, district, and community levels through the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, the U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative and other health-related programming. In cooperation with Zambia’s Ministry of Health and other partners, we improve healthcare quality and access to care,change attitudes and behaviors, and provide critical medicines and commodities, specifically in maternal and child health, nutrition, family planning and the prevention and treatment of diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS. Through Government-to-Government mechanisms, we enable the Zambian government to decentralize health service delivery by strengthening capacity at provincial, district, and community health facilities.