U.S. Embassy Awards Rural Community Grants

Ambassador Palmer shakes hands with a receipentFourteen organizations received grants valued at over $94,000 (MK49 million) from the U.S. Ambassador’s Self-Help Program at a ceremony held at the U.S. Embassy today.

This year’s grants will increase communities’ access to clean and safe water, improve education through construction of school blocks; a girls’ hostel and library; contribute to more pregnant women delivering at clinics through construction of waiting shelter; and  providing community linkages to schools, hospitals and markets through the construction of a bridge. In addition, income generating projects will see the establishment of three value-adding processing centers, train women in vocational skills, and establish an organic manure processing plant. These projects will create jobs for men and women in the rural areas.

Addressing the grantees, Ambassador Virginia Palmer said, “We are happy to see your commitment to uplifting living standards in your communities. We believe these projects will be a catalyst for the sustainable transformation of your communities’ education, health, and economic status.”

The Ambassador’s Self-Help Fund is designed to support community-driven development projects that address grassroots economic and social problems.  The program selects projects that 1) improve basic economic or social conditions at village level; 2) have a high-impact, can be quickly implemented, and benefit a large number of people; 3) involve a significant local contribution in labor, material, or cash; 4) are within the ability of the local community to operate and maintain; 5) are a direct response to the initiative and aspirations of the local community; and 6) make income-generating activities possible.

Contacts:         E.J. Monster – Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Embassy 

Marcus Muhariwa – Information Specialist, U.S. Embassy