Recognizing how difficult it can be to predict epidemics, the World Health Organization recently declared that the unknown “Disease X” is likely the most deadly infectious disease facing the public today. Considering that it takes just 36 hours for deadly pathogens to spread anywhere in the world, “Disease X” could prove even more devastating than the recent Ebola and Zika outbreaks.
Just last year, Gap Inc. partnered with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to launch the Women + Water Alliance in India, a collaboration to improve and sustain the health and well-being of women and communities touched by the apparel industry. By incorporating lessons on safe sanitation and hygiene practices, as well as building communication and advocacy skills, P.A.C.E. is empowering women and girls with the knowledge and resources they need to drive change in their communities.
There is good news in Congress this week – Republicans and Democrats have come together, once again, to strengthen the impact of American food aid around the world with the introduction of a new bill by Senators Bob Corker (R-TN) and Chris Coons (D-DE) and Representatives Ed Royce (R-CA) and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR).
After years of military battles and airstrikes, ISIS was finally defeated in Raqqa, but it left the city – once home to more than 200,000 people – in ruins. To prevent the threat of ISIS from returning, Raqqa must rebuild, starting with basic services and new homes for residents. “That’s where we come in,” USAID Administrator Mark Green said.
Deep in the border brushlands shared by Malawi and Zambia, yet another ivory poacher is in handcuffs. A team of park rangers has been tracking this particular poaching syndicate for weeks. His crime? Slaughtering a 40-year-old bull elephant to sell its ivory for tens of thousands of dollars on the black market.
Today marks the tenth Annual Letter from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, a landmark anniversary for such an influential voice in the development community. And this year’s Letter takes a slightly different tact, with Bill and Melinda Gates answering the “10 Tough Questions” they are most often asked about their work and their foundation. To commemorate a decade of notes, here are three top takeaways on global aid.
Fifteen years ago, President George W. Bush announced the launch of PEPFAR – the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief – during his State of the Union address, declaring that “this nation can lead the world in sparing innocent people from a plague of nature.” With an AIDS-free generation finally within sight, we cannot afford to scale back our investments in PEPFAR’s lifesaving work.
The global refugee crisis is one of the world’s most pressing and complicated humanitarian challenges. With millions of people displaced around the world and over 655,000 Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh alone, the scope and scale of the crisis is daunting. Fortunately, the United States, USAID, the UN, and other Governments and organizations are stepping in to provide life-saving supplies and services.
Liberia has reached a critical milestone of progress. Today’s inauguration of President George Weah, succeeding President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, marks the first time since 1944 the country has seen a peaceful transfer of power. While credit for this historic achievement rests with the Liberian people and their quest for democracy, we must also acknowledge the impact of U.S. development assistance and democracy support.
As the international community gears up to tackle the emerging challenges of 2018, two enduring problems must first be addressed: ongoing violent conflicts and subsequent humanitarian emergencies. Since 2010, state-on-state conflict has increased by 60 percent, and conflict within countries has increased by 125 percent. As a result of this dangerous trend, the number of people forced to flee their homes is at an all-time high since World War II.