Even as more communities become better prepared for the unexpected and more early warning systems that can detect threats like severe weather events are in place, there are times when humanitarian assistance is needed. USAID offers an extra hand in times of crisis; in 2015, our teams responded to 49 disasters.   

Our friends in Haiti, Jamaica and the Caribbean were the latest to need assistance. USAID dispatched a DART (Disaster Assistance Response Team) even before Hurricane Matthew landed. Partners and interagency stakeholders quickly assessed conditions and delivered vital food assistance and relief supplies to Haitians and others in the region. With a network of existing health and nutrition safety net programs in place, we will work work with affected people to plan for a stronger tomorrow. 
On Our Minds: Resilience Building

When consecutive droughts dried up their fields, Wilfred Charles and six farmers from his village in Malawi spent three years building irrigation canals to keep crops growing. Like a “dream come true,” the irrigation farming system renewed life in his community.Wilfred’s story represents what resilience looks like. Hear Wilfred’s full story in our short video and learn more about USAID’s work to build climate change resilient communities here.   

Feed the Future is Fueling an End to Poverty 

If you’ve met Taroni of Bangladesh or Hapsatou of Senegal, you know that Feed the Future impacts the lives of real people. Since the U.S. Government launched its signature global hunger and food security initiative in 2009, poverty has dropped by up to 36 percent in many areas where Feed the Future works. Help us celebrate progress by viewing the U.S. Global Food Security Strategy and entering our recipe contest.

We Will Rise takes to TV

Did you miss it? In celebration of International Day of the Girl earlier this month, CNN aired a new film about First Lady Michelle Obama’s advocacy for girls’ education. When 10 percent more girls attend school, a country’s GDP sees an average increase of 3 percent. Click through to see how USAID is working to Let Girls Learn and promoting gender equality.

Drumroll please...

What do “Love Mates,” unmanned aerial vehicles and cold spot surveillance have in common? These are three of five winning ideas that will be funded through USAID’s Combating Zika and Future Threats Grand Challenge. The U.S. Global Development Lab also recently announced $6.2 million in Development Innovation Ventures grants to 12 organizations that are piloting and scaling innovations that demonstrate promise in solving challenges faced by millions of people around the world. 

The Power of Less than 1 Percent

Even though the United States is one of the most generous contributors to development work around the world, foreign assistance totals less than 1 percent of the federal budget. A whopping 25 percent below what most Americans think we spend! For a breakdown of development funding and some fascinating visuals, check out this story from the Washington Post.