Impact Newsletter - August 10, 2012

Friday, August 10, 2012
Impact: A weekly look at USAID around the world

Volume Three, Issue Twelve

A Vision for "Open Source Development"

USAID Administrator Dr. Rajiv Shah.  Photo credit: Vanessa Cheeves, USAID
USAID Administrator Dr. Rajiv Shah.
Vanessa Cheeves, USAID

Last week, Administrator Shah delivered the Aspen Institute's inaugural Madeleine K. Albright Global Development Lecture by laying out a new vision for international development called, "Open Source Development". 

If we're going to deliver on ambitious development goals in the next two decades, we have to employ a much bigger definition of development to get us there. USAID must connect the world's biggest development challenges to development problems solvers - all around the world. Development attracts many of the best students, brightest minds, and strongest spirits, open source development can help keep these people inspired through the full arc of a career by offering the true reward of being successful - combining productivity with meaning.

Olympic Gold Medalist is USAID Development Champion

US forward Abby Wambach (R) celebrates after scoring during the London 2012 Olympic Games. Photo: Andrew Yates, AFP
US forward Abby Wambach (R) celebrates after scoring during the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Andrew Yates, AFP

Here at USAID, we're especially excited about yesterday's U.S. Olympic Soccer team's gold medal. Last week, USAID announced that U.S. Olympic soccer star, Abby Wambach, will serve as the Agency's first-ever Development Champion. 

In this role, Wambach will raise awareness of the work USAID is undertaking to improve the lives of young women and girls through sport around the world. 

Watch this special message from Wambach recorded before she left for London to compete as part of the U.S. women's Olympic soccer team. Learn more about USAID's work using sport for development

Celebrating International Youth Day

International Youth Day Logo

This coming Sunday marks the United Nation's International Youth Day. Thanks to the transformative power of new technologies, young people are putting their talents to use in the field of development to drive real change--both at home and abroad. 

At 1.5 billion, today's global youth generation is the largest in history and USAID understands the important role youth play as partners and leaders in development. 

Watch Dr. Shah's special video message about USAID's work with youth around the world, and follow USAID on Facebook and Twitter this week to join the conversation.

Ramadan Nights: Feeding the Future

The Iftar celebration, co-sponsored by the USDA, USAID and Islamic Relief USA, on Tuesday, August 7, 2012. Photo credit: Lance C
The Iftar celebration, co-sponsored by the USDA, USAID and Islamic Relief USA, on Tuesday, August 7, 2012.
Lance Cheung, USDA

This week, USAID hosted its 10th annual Ramadan Iftar with friends at the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Islamic Relief. The program for the evening was "Feed the Future: Together We Can." Attendees included USAID, USDA  and Islamic Relief staff, civic and thought leaders, Muslim community members and students, and leaders of faith-based development organizations. 

At the Iftar, Administrator Shah discussed the many ways that USAID responds to challenges like water conservation and food security every day. Around the world, USAID missions are also hosting dinners in recognition of this important time. Ramadan is a chance to honor a faith known for its diversity and commitment to caring for the less fortunate, and to reach out to those in greatest need. 

USAID in the News

Still can't get enough of USAID? Here's what's been in the news this week. In the Huffington Post, Josh Harris of International Medical Corps UK discussed a collaborative project with USAID in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where the organizations use soccer to teach teenage girls lessons about peace and to change attitudes on violence. CNN, The New York Times and the Associated Press, among other outlets, all reported on the start of a USAID-led cleanup of Agent Orange in a contaminated site at an airport in Danang, Vietnam. This is the United States' first effort at cleaning up the chemical, which the U.S. military used to defoliate jungles during the Vietnam War. The Gadling travel blog featured an interview with USAID Foreign Service Officer David Thompson; Forbes India conducted an interview with Romi Bhatia, the senior adviser on diaspora partnerships in the Global Partnerships Division at USAID. And finally, with sadness we note that The Washington Post, CNN and other outlets reported on the death of USAID Foreign Service Officer Ragaei Abdelfattah, who was killed Aug. 8 in a terrorist attack in Kunar Province, Afghanistan.    

Want More Information?

Read USAID's Impact Blog to stay updated on the latest new and information about our programs across the globe. Read stories from the field, hear from development experts, view weekly photos and videos of every day activities around the world. You can also join the conversation on social media!