Event: Panel on Civil Society in Afghanistan and Pakistan at The Stimson Center
By admin | Published: January 11, 2013
Please join us for the panel discussion “Civil Society in Afghanistan and Pakistan: Enabling Environments, Civil Society Capacity, and the CSO Sustainability Index” at the The Henry L. Stimson Center.
The discussion will feature civil society experts examining the current environment for civil society in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Panelists will introduce the recently published 2011 Civil Society Sustainability Index (CSOSI) for Afghanistan and Pakistan and explore some of the strengths and opportunities in the civil society sector of both countries.
Read the full reports on Aga Khan Foundation’s PartnershipsInAction website.
When? Wednesday, January 16, 2013
9:30 – 11:00am
Where? The Henry L. Stimson Center
12th Floor, Conference Room
1111 19th Street NW
Washington, DC 20036
Other important information:
- Please send your RSVP to Garrison Spencer at email@example.com.
- Admission is free.
- Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis and not guaranteed.
- Please bring a photo ID and allow additional time to pass through a security checkpoint.
For more information on the event, please see the full invite with an agenda and bios of panelists.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THE COCA-COLA FOUNDATION AWARDS GRANT TO
AGA KHAN FOUNDATION FOR
YOUTH EMPOWERMENT AND WATER STEWARDSHIP
Grant Aims to Foster the Socio-Economic Development of Youth in Kyrgyzstan & Afghanistan
September 5, 2012— The Coca-Cola Foundation—the global philanthropic arm of The Coca-Cola Company—granted US$200,000 to the Aga Khan Foundation USA, to foster the social and economic development of youth in Kyrgyzstan and Afghanistan. With an additional US$50,000 contribution from The Coca-Cola Company, the grants will leverage The Project for Economic Development and Education Opportunities for Youth in Kyrgyzstan and Afghanistan by equipping more than 12,000 students, young entrepreneurs, teachers and farmers with entrepreneurial skills and water management practices.
This project will be implemented by two agencies of the Aga Khan Development Network: the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) and the University of Central Asia (UCA). The initiative will encourage social entrepreneurship among youth, augment agricultural productivity, and increase access to educational opportunities.
“Promoting economic growth through entrepreneurship development is a core priority for UCA, with a central emphasis on endeavors that create social value to the communities where our learners come from,” said Dr. Bodhan Krawchenko, Director General of the University of Central Asia.
Dr. Mirza Jahani, the CEO of the Aga Khan Foundation USA added, “We are delighted to have Coca-Cola join us to inspire young entrepreneurs in Asia. This partnership brings fresh energy to improving lives and livelihoods.”
Through a nationwide awareness-raising campaign in Kyrgyzstan, the Aga Khan Foundation and its partner, the University of Central Asia, will encourage youth to submit innovative social entrepreneurship ideas to address an issue in their community. Already, more than 200 applications have been received, and 25 finalists received training in Bishkek to develop their project ideas. The Aga Khan Foundation will now award the top 10 projects with small seed grants.
In addition, the project will create access to and improve the quality of more than 1,600 hectares of arable land by rehabilitating agricultural infrastructure and enhancing the management of water resources in remote villages of Kara-Tala and Kyzyl-Jyldyz in Naryn oblast, Kyrgyzstan.
In Afghanistan, the project will support professional development for 15 teachers of English and Information Technology in secondary schools as well as increase access to modern Dari-language textbooks for nearly 6,000 students.
U.S. Government and Aga Khan Foundation to Launch Investment Fund for Afghanistan
For Immediate Release
Friday, February 8, 2013
Washington, DC: The U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) signed a memorandum of understanding with the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) at a private ceremony today that will establish the first investment fund in Badakhshan, Afghanistan to invest in social development projects.
When the fund is finalized, USAID and AKF will each provide $30 million over a five year period, subject to the availability of funds, to help leverage the Afghan private sector to advance social development.
At a signing ceremony at the State Department, Deputy Secretary Thomas Nides said, "Public-private partnerships like this one are the right way to do development. They can have a huge, sustainable impact and a significant return on investment."
Alex Thier, assistant to the USAID administrator for Afghanistan and Pakistan added, "We are focused on sustainability and increased self-sufficiency in Afghanistan. This agreement will help empower the Afghan people by marrying social development needs and private sector growth."
The Agha Khan Foundation CEO Dr. Mirza Jahani, noted, “We are delighted to mark this new phase of our partnership with USAID for strengthening Afghanistan. This new alliance – one of the largest GDAs (Global Development Alliance) ever – builds on the depth of AKF’s Multi-Input Area Development, or MIAD, approach to reducing poverty. And it takes our experience a step further, with an innovative public-private model for driving social and economic development, both in Afghanistan and more broadly in Central Asia.”
The seed money from both USAID and the foundation is intended to create a virtuous cycle of economic and social development in Badakhshan province in Afghanistan. The partnership reflects the importance of leveraging private industry to fund development efforts.
J Alex Thier
Related Bureau or Independent Office
Office of Afghanistan and Pakistan Affairs
......Last updated: February 11, 2013
Carving a Future in Cairo's Darb al-Ahmar
.Fri, 2013-04-12 18:52 — admin
By Caroline Lai, Program Assistant with Aga Khan Foundation U.S.A.
I returned to Cairo in mid-February to visit the USAID-funded Head Start! for Youth Entrepreneurship and Employment program where I met with a diverse range of people involved in the program. When I previously visited in November, I spent most of my time working with the program staff to develop our work plan for next year. During my most recent visit, I was able to see in action the activities we had discussed and spend a considerable amount of time interacting with the beneficiaries we promised we would reach.
Despite challenges, Head Start! remains a fascinating and beneficial program. The program provides opportunities that were previously unavailable and unthinkable, such as access to finance for young entrepreneurs; carpentry training provided by experts in the field; and short-term job opportunities through infrastructure sub-grants to local civil society organizations. The heart of the program lies with the beneficiaries it reaches and the difference it makes to individuals in some of Cairo’s poorest neighborhoods.
I got to spend nearly an entire day visiting the Community Development Company (CDC) Carpentry workshop, which trains young carpenters in Darb al-Ahmar. During that visit, I sat in on an Arab Carpentry training class, and spoke with some of the carpenters being trained. Many of them do not have a formal education and have followed their fathers and uncles into the carpentry profession. When I spoke with a few of the carpenters participating in the Aga Khan Foundation, Egypt and CDC-led trainings about what motivated them to join the program, they all mentioned that these trainings under Head Start! are the first of their kind offered to residents of neighborhood.
Waleed Mossad working on a project.
One of the people I spent time with was Waleed Mossad, a 33-year old carpenter born and raised in Darb al-Ahmar. Growing up in a family of carpenters, he began learning the trade when he was 10. While skilled at what he does, prior to Head Start!, he was never able to master Arab Carpentry due to its complexity and unwillingness of those skilled in Arab Carpentry to teach others. From the training, Waleed learned secrets of the trade, visited historic sites, and gained access to professional tools and equipment. After successfully completing the 10-week training course, he created a stool, which has been showcased in a carpentry exhibition in Cairo, and gained confidence in his skills. Due to the training and access to experts in the field, Waleed no longer feels that he is not as talented or marketable as those specialized in Arab Carpentry. One day, he hopes to start his own workshop that will compete with the elite carpentry workshops in Darb al-Ahmar.
Waleed is just one of many people that the Head Start! program strives to reach. The program provides hope and opportunities to those who are typically overlooked or left out. As the program grows, the Aga Khan Development Network will continue to make a difference in people’s lives in Cairo, just as the program has already made a difference in Waleed’s life.
This Earth Day, we're highlighting the important role that parks can play to alleviate poverty in developing countries.
How Do We Take Action?
The Aga Khan Development Network's (AKDN) Historic Cities program imagines development differently: It sees people’s culture as a seed that, when watered, can bear fruit in their better health, better incomes, and as a source of hope and prosperity in poor surroundings.
With 10 park and garden projects worldwide, the program has shown that even in the most difficult settings, urban parks can improve life in a city and can also drive economic change. These projects go beyond physically restoring parks and landmarks -- they get at deeper causes of poverty and help uplift entire communities.
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