How the partnership between America and African States is helping the people
Posted Thursday, September 27 2012 at 20:00
- Through Pepfar, the US supports treatment that keeps over four million people with HIV in Africa alive
- In 2011 alone, Pepfar programmes allowed 200,000 newborns to begin life HIV-free
Last month, I went on a nine-country trip that took me from West Africa to East Africa and the Horn, and to Southern Africa. At every stop, I saw how America is working with our African partners — governments, the private sector, and civil society — to deliver concrete benefits.
This work doesn’t always draw headlines, and too few Africans and Americans are aware of what we’re doing together.
So it’s worth taking a closer look at what we can accomplish when we build sustainable relationships that empower rather than exploit — that are based on partnership, not patronage.
I saw this in action in Malawi, where I visited a girls’ camp and saw teachers and Peace Corps volunteers working together to help young women realise their potential.
This partnership model is what we’re trying to foster in our work around the continent, from Senegal to South Sudan to South Africa.
Our partners in Africa have asked us to focus on four areas in particular, and in each area, we’re making tangible progress — together.
Ultimately, it’s not the promises that matter — it’s the specific results. And the sheer magnitude of the results we’ve produced is exciting.
The first area is sparking development and opportunity. Perhaps the signature US development initiative is the President’s Emergency Plan for Aids Relief (Pepfar), which since 2004 has helped provide millions of people across Africa with the chance to live up to their potential.
Through Pepfar, the US supports treatment that keeps over four million people with HIV in Africa alive.
In 2011 alone, Pepfar programmes allowed 200,000 newborns to begin life HIV-free.
Our work extends far beyond health, from education to food security to humanitarian relief.
The US has funded nearly half a million scholarships for girls and boys since 2004, helping Africans develop the skills they need to compete in the global economy.
Through the President’s Feed the Future initiative, we’re partnering with 12 African countries to significantly reduce poverty and malnutrition — and we can see the results.
I met some farmers in Malawi who, with US support, have contributed to a 500 per cent increase in milk production over the last decade.
In Kenya, nearly 300,000 households have seen increases in incomes and food security.
And when disaster strikes, the US helps save lives, providing more humanitarian assistance to Africa than any other country.
Across the Sahel, the US has delivered emergency aid to more than three million people, and we provided food, shelter, and healthcare to nearly five million people in the Horn last year during the height of the drought.
The second area is economic growth, trade, and investment. We know that seven of the 10 fastest growing economies in the world are in Africa, and that economic growth in Africa can support the aspirations of people across the continent, as well as global prosperity.